First, the City he began to run. Then he kidnapped the ball. And then he finally found Haaland, something that had not happened in Germany where he lived disconnected from the prodigious striker. But on the way to the quarterfinals of the Champions League, he did detect the majestic figure of that modern nine, full of physical power, while at the same time radiating, who was going to say it, technical delicacy. Leipzig didn’t even see Haaland, capable as he was of signing three goals in just 23 minutes. three that were five in 35 minutes with an impressive win by Guardiola’s team.
The 1-0 came from a penalty, a penalty via VAR that only exists in modern football because the human eye is incapable of spotting that Rodri’s header had touched – did he really touch it? – on Hendrichs’ arm. The 2-0 was a play that portrays the voracity of Haaland. He put pressure on Blaswich, the frightened goalkeeper of Leipzig, who got the ball off of him without knowing that he would return immediately with a clearance-pass from Akanji to the Norwegian, who assisted De Bruyne, whose immense kick repelled the crossbar with the ball flying over the snowy Manchester night.
Who caught that ball? The same one that had caused the German error. I mean, Haaland. the night looked good for the norwegian But the best was yet to come. He passed through the German area to make it 3-0, taking advantage of a great header from Rúben Días.
City was anxious. anxious and hungry as he demonstrated with a furious start to the second half in which Gundogan slipped into Haaland’s big European night. It was a simple parenthesis because the Norwegian was not kidding, determined as he was to become related to Messi. And he did. As? Very easy. Two more.
Five goals in 35 minutes
A display of power, positioning, intuition – the ball looks for him – and, above all, forcefulness. Eight shots on goal, five goals. A historic and unforgettable night because football attended an almost supernatural event. Seeing a striker who scores five goals, with his left, right, head…, in just over an hour because Guardiola, aware of the treasure he guards, took him off the field and put him in the urn.
It’s not what he did but how he did it. It is not the football rebellion that Haaland demonstrated, but rather that there is no limit to his galactic football. In Germany he did not shoot once on goal, leaving City out in the open with that tie (1-1). A draw that no one remembers anymore because Haaland, who scored five goals in just 35 minutes, offered a night to remember, which De Bruyne wanted to join with the seventh citizen goal. Another marvel that carried in this case the signature of Kevin de Bruyne.
The Haaland thing seemed like fiction football. No, it was not. It is the future. Sorry, the present. It’s Haaland. 36 games with Manchester City. and he carries 39 goals.
7-Manchester City: Ederson; Stones, Akanji, Dias, Ake; Rodri (Phillips, m.64), Gundogan (Mahrez, m.55), Silva, De Bruyne, Grealish (Foden, m.55); and Haaland (Álvarez, m.64).
0 – RB Leipzig: Blaswich; Henrichs (Klostermann, m.80), Orban, Gvardiol, Raum; Laimer, Kampl, Haidara (Simakan, m.63) Szoboszlai (Olmo, m.72), Forsberg (Silva, m.63); and Werner (Poulsen, m.63).
goals: 1-0. Haaland, m.22, 2-0. Haaland, m.24, 3-0. Haaland, m.45+3, 4-0. Haaland, m.54, 5-0. Gundogan, m.54, 6-0. Haaland, m.57 and 7-0. De Bruyne, m.91.
Referee: Slavko Vincic (SLO) booked De Bruyne (m.67) and Akanji (m.77) for Manchester City and Henrichs (m.21) for RB Leipzig.
incidents: Match corresponding to the round of 16 second leg of the Champions League played at the Etihad Stadium (Manchester).