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March 20, 2012
Report: Ballack agent criticizes Red Bulls GM Soler after rejecting his client

Erik Soler was severely criticzed by Michael Ballack's agent, Michael Becker.
Erik Soler was severely criticzed by Michael Ballack's agent, Michael Becker.
Linda Cuttone/Sports Vue Images
Calling Erik Soler "clueless," the agent of former German international captain Michael Ballack laced into the Red Bulls general manager and sporting director for deciding to vie for Aston Villa midfielder Stephen Ireland rather than his client.

"This is an unexpected development," agent Michael Becker told goal.de, according to kicker sportmagazin.

"Why one would want a no-name player, that no one knows, who hasn't played in months? And this, while Michael Ballack is available to be had?"

The Red Bulls reportedly are interested in the 25-year-old Ireland, the Irish National Team midfielder who has played 15 times for the English Premier League team, scoring one goal and setting up another.

Ballack, 35, a member of Bayer Leverkusen in the Bundesliga, is considered on the downside of his career, according to many soccer observers.

There are those who feel that Ballack can not play an attacking role anymore.

"Ask Erik 'Clueless' Soler, why he thinks Ballack can only play as a central defender or a ball-holding midfielder," Becker was quoted by goal.de.."This idea is his alone."

But the rejection does not mean Becker or Ballack have given up on the German midfielder playing in Major League Soccer.

"Soon it will be July 16. I am certain that Michael will be seen somewhere in MLS," Becker told goal.de.

The Red Bulls did not have a comment on the story.
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