Germany captain Michael Ballack will figure in next week's FIFA World Cup™ qualifier against Azerbaijan despite being short of match fitness, coach Joachim Low declared on Wednesday.

Ballack was forced to fly home early from his club Chelsea's pre-season tour of the United States with a fractured toe, but is set to figure in the Community Shield clash with Manchester United on Sunday.

Low said: "I have been in constant contact with him. He has resumed training with Chelsea and everything's going well. I'm working on the basis that he will be available."

Loew stressed Ballack's importance for the qualifier in Baku. "He has considerable experience and brings his own qualities, he is without doubt a leader."