Sunday, April 2, 2023

Haaland leads Man City to 7-0 rout of Leipzig

Erling Haaland became the third player in Champions League history to score five goals in a game as he led Manchester City to an unrelenting 7-0 rout of RB Leipzig in the second leg of their last-16 tie on Tuesday.
The victory, which equalled City’s biggest European win, sent Pep Guardiola’s side into the quarter-finals 8-1 on aggregate, with Ilkay Gundogen and Kevin De Bruyne also on target for City in a devastating display at the Etihad Stadium.
It was a record-breaking night for the 22-year-old Haaland, who became Manchester City’s top goalscorer in a season as he took his tally for the campaign to 39 goals, vaulting him past Tommy Johnson’s mark from 1928-29.
He also became the youngest player to reach 30 Champions League goals as he moved on to 33, hitting that mark in 25 games, the fewest ever.
Haaland hinted he was in for a big night with a quick-fire brace, slotting home a penalty in the 22nd minute after Benjamin Henrichs was adjudged to have handled in the box following a VAR review, with the Norwegian celebrating with a knee slide and salute.
He found the net again 19 seconds after the kickoff.
Haaland pressured Leipzig’s keeper into a poor clearance that fell to De Bruyne. The Belgian’s shot came back off the crossbar and bounced up for Haaland to head home.
His fifth hat-trick in all competitions this season arrived in first-half stoppage time when Ruben Dias’s header bobbled along the line and Haaland rushed in to force it into the net.
Gundogen made it 4-0 in the 49th, driving a low finish into the bottom corner from the edge of the area, before Haaland capped his history-making night with two more from close range in the 53rd and 57th minutes. Guardiola substituted the Norwegian in the 62nd minute, perhaps sparing Leipzig further humiliation, but denying Haaland the opportunity to score a record-breaking sixth in a single Champions League game.
De Bruyne curled in a stunning seventh goal for good measure seconds before the final whistle.
Manchester City have never hoisted the Champions League trophy, coming closest in 2021 when they lost 1-0 to Chelsea in the final. They lost to Real Madrid in last season’s semis.
Inter Milan move into quarters
Inter Milan moved into the UEFA Champions League quarter finals for the first time since 2010-11, as they held Porto to a goalless draw on Tuesday night to eliminate the Portuguese side 1-0 on aggregate.
Inter were looking for a resounding response after a poor run of domestic performance and entered the Estadio do Dragao with a slender first-leg lead thanks to Romelu Lukaku’s late winner, a Xinhua report said. Porto dominated the game but Inter goalkeeper Andre Onana kept the Portuguese side at bay.
The home side were reduced to 10 men as winger Pepe received his second yellow card, and Porto failed to turn the game around. Inter followed AC Milan to become the second Serie A side to reach the Champions League quarters, with Napoli expected to follow them as they host Eintracht Frankfurt on Wednesday with a 2-0 first-leg lead.

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