Balitsch signs new Bayer deal

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BAYER LEVERKUSEN have handed Hanno Balitsch a one-year extension to his contract.

The new deal will keep the highly-rated Under-21 international at the BayArena until the summer of 2006.

Balitsch has established himself as a key player at Bayer and the club are delighted to tie him down to a long-term deal.

"We had agreed already in April on the extension, but it had been questionable until it is signed," said Bayer manager Ilja Kaenzig.

"This contract shows the esteem we have for the player."