Bayer Leverkusen are confident that out-of-contract midfielder Michael Ballack will return to the club.
The 33-year-old Germany ace played for Leverkusen for three years between 1999 and 2002, and in his last season led them to a UEFA Champions League final, which they lost 2-1 thanks to a superb goal from Real Madrid's Zinedine Zidane.
Ballack has since gone on to become a leading player on the world stage, although his contract with Premier League outfit Chelsea expired in June and was not renewed.
After Leverkusen he moved to Bayern Munich, and he emerged as a key figure for the Germany national team.
Ballack was ruled out of this summer's World Cup in South Africa though, as an ankle injury sustained in last season's FA Cup final forced him to miss the tournament.
Leverkusen sporting director Rudi Voller is confident of tempting Ballack back to the BayArena, and says the club are willing to stretch their finances.
"We've already spoken to him and we're ready to make an effort on the salary front," he said.
"It is realistic to believe that Michael could return to Bayer.
"He knows the club, it was while he was playing here that he kick-started his superb international career."
Leverkusen will be competing in the Europa League next term after finishing the last Bundesliga campaign in fourth.