Ghana fought back to lead, but Lazio veteran Miroslav Klose snatched Germany’s 2-2 draw with a record-breaking goal.
Thomas Muller was hoping to add to his hat-trick in the 4-0 mauling of Portugal and Mats Hummels shook off a thigh injury, but Bastian Schweinsteiger wasn’t fit to start yet. Ghana fell 2-1 to USA in the final minutes and were in dire need of a result. Brothers Kevin Prince and Jerome Boateng faced off for different nations.
Ghana had a confident start, as Asamoah Gyan fired over from a Christian Atsu cross, then the provider had his own shot to sting Manuel Neuer’s gloves and Muller came sliding in on a Mesut Ozil assist.
A long-range screamer from Milan midfielder Sulley Muntari again forced Neuer into a save and the goalkeeper sprinted off his line to put off Gyan.
Muller rolled across the six-yard box, but Mario Gotze couldn’t quite get there in time for the tap-in.
Sampdoria defender Shkodran Mustafi came on for the second half and Germany found their breakthrough.
Muller chipped a wonderful pass over the defence from the right side and found Gotze’s scuffed header, which bounced in off his knee to surprise the goalkeeper.
However, the Germans had barely finished celebrating when Ghana grabbed an equaliser, as Andre Ayew got a splendid glancing header on Harrison Afful’s cross. The Marseille forward has been repeatedly linked with a move to Napoli and made history as the first Ghanaian ever to score with a header in a World Cup.
Muntari helped turn the game around completely, as the Milan midfielder dispossessed Philip Lahm and sent Asamoah Gyan clear to blast across Neuer.
Jordan Ayew threatened a third goal on the counter, but fired straight at Neuer rather than rolling across for Gyan. A similar chance moments later saw Andre Ayew inches away from getting good contact to a cross.
Joachim Low threw on Lazio veteran Miroslav Klose and it proved to be a masterstroke, as a corner was flicked on by Benedikt Howedes and the 36-year-old was at full stretch to tap in at the back post from a yard. He celebrated with an acrobatic tumble, as this was his 15th World Cup goal for Germany – one more than Gerd Muller and equalling Ronaldo’s all-time tournament record.
Klose is also only the third player to score in four different World Cups, matching Pele and Uwe Seeler.
Juventus full-back Kwadwo Asamoah needed a crucial sliding tackle to block Muller as he pulled the trigger and Jordan Ayew tested Neuer from distance before a Gyan angled drive whistled wide.
Klose also had the chance to add a 16th World Cup goal, but pulled off target. Ghana had a great chance on the counter in stoppages, but foolishly fell foul of the offside trap. Sulley Muntari picked up his second yellow card of the tournament and will be suspended against Portugal.
There was concern at the final whistle, as Muller collided with Boye and was left covered in blood.
Germany 2-2 Ghana
Scorers: Gotze 51 (Ge), A Ayew 54 (Gh), A Gyan 63 (Gh), Klose 71 (Ge)
Germany: Neuer; J Boateng (Mustafi 46), Mertesacker, Hummels, Howedes; Kroos, Lahm, Khedira (Schweinsteiger 69); Ozil, Muller, Gotze (Klose 69)
Ghana: Dauda; Afful, Mensah, Boye, Asamoah; Rabiu (Badu 78), Muntari; Atsu (Wakaso 72), P Boateng (J Ayew 53), A Ayew; A Gyan
Ref: Ricci (BRA)