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Klose receives Ronaldo praise after a record-equalling night in Fortaleza

The German striker scored his 15th World Cup goal to rescue a 2-2 draw against Ghana.

MIKEY STAFFORD reports for the from Estadio Castelao, Fortaleza.

THE TWO GREATEST STRIKERS in World Cup history paid tribute to each other this evening after Germany’s Miroslav Klose joined Ronaldo at the top of the scoring charts with his 15th goal at a World Cup final.

Brazilian phenom Ronaldo took to Twitter to congratulate Klose soon after the Germany striker came off the bench to score his side’s equaliser in an intense 2-2 draw with Ghana.

On a good night for goal-scorers, Asamoah Gyan equalled Roger Milla’s African record of five World Cup finals goals with the Black Stars’ second and he too paid tribute to Klose, who is one of only three players to score at four World Cups.

Brazil Soccer WCup Germany Ghana Source: Themba Hadebe/AP/Press Association Images

Ronaldo’s record of 15 goals has stood since he added three goals in 2006 to the four he scored at France 1998 and the eight he netted in Japan-Korea 2002 as Brazil won their fifth World Cup. Despite joking with fans before the tournament that he would like them to put a “tiny spell” on Klose to prevent him from reaching his mark in Brazil, he immediately congratulated the 36 year old German on his achievement.

“Welcome to the club,” he tweeted. “I imagine your happiness! What a beautiful World Cup!”

Klose now hopes to score again in Germany’s final Group G game against the United States to take the record outright

“I hope I play in the next game and I hope we play a little bit better than today,” said the Lazio hitman, before paying tribute to Ronaldo.

“He is a great striker, a great man and for me it is a pleasure.”

Klose, who famously scored five headed goals — including one against the Republic of Ireland —at his first World Cup in 2002 also surpassed Gerd “Der Bomber” Muller as Germany’s top scorer of all time with his 69th international goal in the 71st minute of this evening’s terrific encounter at the Estadio Castelao.

He toe-poked home a Benedikt Howedes’ flick-on to cancel out Gyan’s 41st international goal eight minutes earlier, which had drawn the Ghanaian captain level with Cameroon legend Milla’s record of five goals at the World Cup finals.

“It is not easy to score five goals in the World Cup. I am very proud, I have been working for my country for the past 12 years and I deserve it,’ said the striker, who left Sunderland to play for Al Ain in the United Arab Emirates.

Brazil Soccer WCup Germany Ghana Source: Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP/Press Association Images

“I’m really, really happy with this record. Scoring five goals in biggest stage like these finals is not easy. I would like to thank the players for all these years, they have supported me through the ups and downs, especially the last World Cup and everything,” said Gyan, who missed a last-minute penalty four years ago against Uruguay that would have sent Ghana through to the semi-finals

“I’m a legend now and I feel great for that,” added the 28 year old, who praised Klose for his achievement.

“He’s a great lad, I saw him in Germany, he is a great striker, even though he had a few injuries this season. I think he came on and proved to everyone what he is capable of.

“To tie up with a legend like Ronaldo is a great achievement for him. Ronaldo is one of the best ever and Klose is able to level with him. He is a great striker and I would like to congratulate him.”

Klose equals Ronaldo’s scoring record as Ghana hold Germany in thriller

As it happened: Germany v Ghana, World Cup Group G

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Mikey Stafford

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