Ballack breaks toe, out of Chelsea's U.S. tour

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Chelsea midfielder Michael Ballack's preseason preparations suffered a setback as he picked up a toe injury this week.

The Germany international has flown back to England for treatment after suffering a break and is to miss the remaining fixtures of the Blues' tour of America.

Ballack featured in Chelsea's 2-0 win over the Seattle Sounders last Saturday, but will not take part in Tuesday's game against Inter Milan. He will also be absent from the meeting with manager Carlo Ancelotti's former club Milan, as well as the concluding game against Club America.

He could be back in action for an encounter with Championship outfit Reading on Aug. 1 upon the Blues' return to England.

Ballack's Chelsea career has been hampered by injury since his arrival from Bayern Munich in 2006.

In April of the following year, the German suffered an ankle injury, keeping him out of action for eight months, during which time he feared he may never play again.

He continued to have foot problems at the start of last season as he limped out of Chelsea's 4-0 win against Portsmouth.