Miroslav Klose has hailed the emergence of Germany's new generation following their huge success in South Africa.
Little was expected of Joachim Low's side in the World Cup finals with the likes of Klose and Lukas Podolski suffering indifferent club campaigns.
However, Klose has continued his fine scoring form when it matters with four goals this summer while the emergence of Mesut Ozil, Thomas Muller and Manuel Neuer has more than just turned heads.
32-year-old striker Klose is likely in his last finals, although he is backing the nation's young stars to carry the weight of expectation for years to come.
Klose insists those who predicted that Germany have been short of developing talent of late have been firmly put in their place following the events that have unfolded in South Africa.
"A few years ago people kept saying that it was a shame there weren't any new generations coming through," Klose said.
"They said we have no forwards and no creative midfielders. Everybody deplored that. But time has proved these people wrong."
Germany are now just one game away from the final and will have to get the better of European champions Spain on Wednesday to secure a place in the final.
Klose is just one goal behind Brazilian legend Ronaldo as the leading scorer in World Cup finals history and insists he never dreamed he could come close to passing his record.
"I spoke with Ronaldo after the final," he recalled.
"At the time I would not have dreamed of ever coming this close to him, needing two more goals to surpass him.
"I hope he's not too worried."