Munich: Germany got the win it wanted at the start of the World Cup. The host beat Costa Rica 4-2 on Friday in the opening match of the tournament, hoping to inspire enough confidence in the team for the rest of the World Cup.

German captain Michael Ballack missed the game with an injury but striker Miroslav Klose celebrated his 28th birthday by scoring two goals. Paulo Wanchope also had two for Costa Rica.

Defender Philipp Lahm, still wearing a special brace after surgery on his left elbow three weeks ago, curved a shot from the edge of the box in the sixth minute to put Germany ahead.

Lahm cut in from the left and got the space he needed when Luis Marin slipped, leaving Lahm plenty of time to aim his shot into upper corner.

Torsten Frings added the fourth goal for Germany in the 87th minute. AP

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