Full-tiime: Manchester City 7-0 RB Leipzig
Five for Haaland, seven for City. They’re back to their best!
That must surely be one of history’s most one-sided Champions League knockout matches. Leipzig had a couple of moments of danger after about half an hour when Ederson was perhaps lucky to have gotten away with a challenge on Laimer outside his box, and Rodri almost gifted Werner an open goal.
Those two incidents happened in around 90 seconds, and City was already 2-0 up by that stage. The hosts’ movement in attack caused Leipzig all kinds of bother, with Haaland constantly getting down the side of Orbán and De Bruyne and Gundogan finding pockets of space in behind the full-backs. That said, Guardiola’s side needed a dubious, VAR-assisted penalty to hit the front, but there was no looking back from then on, with Haaland heading in a second within 60 seconds and bundling home a third from a corner.
In truth, it was all over at half-time but City wasn’t prepared to settle for only three goals, at least not at the start of the second period. Three goals in 12 minutes, including another two for Haaland, put the Premier League side on the verge of the biggest-ever victory in the knockout stages in the current format of the Champions League. It looked as if it wouldn’t come as they made a host of changes for the final 30 minutes, in which they took their foot off the gas. But De Bruyne saved the best until last, curling a beautiful strike into the corner with almost the last kick of the game, equalling 7-0 knockout wins posted by Bayern Munich (twice) and…City themselves.
But tonight was all about Haaland, who has become the fastest man to reach 30 Champions League goals.