Germany coach Joachim Low said trust in striker Miroslav Klose paid off as his hat-trick sealed a 3-3 draw in Helsinki, where Die Mannschaft narrowly avoided a shock defeat to Finland on Wednesday.
Despite recent criticism from the German press after a barren spell in front of goal for Bayern Munich, Klose silenced his critics by finishing his hat-trick seven minutes from time to equalise in the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™ qualifier.
The 30-year-old has now scored 44 goals in 84 games to leave him just four away from becoming Germany's third-highest goalscorer, and Low was full of praise for his forward who broke Finnish hearts. "We know what Miro Klose can do, sometimes in life having a bit of trust pays off," said Low.
"That was a class football match, both sides could have won. Finland were very strong in attack and we struggled with the long ball. If you play in a 3-3 game, no one can be entirely happy, but we got stronger as the game progressed. ."
We showed a lot of character to come from behind three times
Each time Finland scored through either forward Jonatan Johansson, midfielder Mika Vayrynen or ex-Liverpool striker Daniel Sjolund, Klose put Germany level. It was a bittersweet night for Finland's English coach Stuart Baxter, as his side worked hard to take the lead three times, but were left with only a single point to show for their efforts.
Waking up happy
"At the moment I find it very difficult to be happy with the draw," said Baxter. "In the last 20 to 30 minutes we lost our shape, we could not keep the ball and we got tired. But I have to praise my side, they played very well going forward. For this reason, I will probably wake up happy with the result in the morning."
And goal-scorer Johansson admitted the result left him annoyed. "We were in the lead against Germany three times, we should have kept it," he said. "The last half an hour was tough, Germany had the ball too often. The first 70 minutes were really good for us, but I am a bit annoyed."
Despite Russia beating Wales 2-1 in Moscow on Wednesday, Germany just hold their place at the top of Group 4 - but defender Heiko Westermann admitted they conceeded too many goals and he was at fault for two of them. "Three goals against us is too many," said the Schalke 04 defender.
"With the second and third goals, I was out of position, but we showed some great morale and earned the draw."
Germany now face Russia in Dortmund on 11 October and Wales in Moenchengladbach on 15 October in their next FIFA World Cup qualifiers, while Finland play minnows Azerbaijan in Helsinki on 11 October before taking on Russia in Moscow on 15 October.