That played a role in my decision for Bayer," said the 33-year-old.
The fact he chose Bayer when we had much less financial clout than our competitors shows his emotional attachment to the team." "Michael will be welcomed here in Leverkusen with open arms," said Bayer general manager Wolfgang Holzhauser.
After playing a prominent role for Chelsea in the Champions League, Ballack will ply his trade in the less high-profile Europa league next season, as Leverkusen, fourth in last season's Bundesliga, narrowly missed out on a Champions League spot.
FIFA ruled in favour of the Turkish club and imposed the ban, which was suspended pending the appeal."We regret this decision which we cannot comprehend," said Leverkusen sports director Rudi Voller.
"Leverkusen is not involved in the dispute with Calhanoglu having joined in 2014 from Hamburger SV."This is a big blow both for Hakan and for us.
He also held talks with Real Madrid's new coach Jose Mourinho, but negotiations broke down as the Spanish giants were reportedly too slow to make a concrete offer.
Ballack, currently on holiday with his family in Sardinia, will sign the contract with Leverkusen when he returns, said German sports agency SID.However, former Germany coach Jürgen Klinsmann urged him to get over his World Cup injury heartbreak by focusing on the 2012 European Championship.If you spent your Tuesday glued to Manchester City’s thrilling 5-3 victory over Monaco in the UEFA Champions League, you may now direct your attention to the day’s other first-leg festival of goals: Bayer Leverkusen 2, Atletico Madrid 4. Lincoln City ] Karim Bellarabi pulled one back for Bayer just three minutes into the second half, but Kevin Gamerio converted from the penalty spot to restore Atleti’s two-goal lead just before the hour mark.Bayer Leverkusen midfielder Hakan Calhanoglu will miss the rest of the season after a four-month ban from FIFA was upheld by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).The 22-year-old had been locked in a contract dispute with Turkish club Trabzonspor dating back to 2011, when the player - then a minor - reached an agreement to join the club, only to extend his contract at Karlsruhe and later sign for Hamburger SV.[ MORE: Rooney left out of Man United’s Europa League squad (again) ] Saul Niguez opened the scoring with a stunning curler after 17 minutes (WATCH HERE), and Antoine Griezmann doubled ‘ advantage eight minutes later to put Diego Simeone’s side in a commanding position with two early away goals. Stefan Savic gave one back to Bayer in the form of an owl goal in the 68th minute, before Fernando Torres brought the visitors’ away-goals haul to four in the 86th minute.