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Erling Haaland back with a bang as Manchester City progress in Champions League



Erling Haaland shrugged off injury to score twice as holders Manchester City reached the Champions League last 16 with a comfortable 3-0 win over 10-man Young Boys.

The prolific Norwegian took his tally for the season to 15 with a penalty and a long-range strike as City eased past the Swiss champions at the Etihad Stadium to secure their fourth successive Group G win.

Phil Foden also got on the scoresheet as City, securing their place in the knockout stages for an 11th successive season, overran opponents who failed to muster a single shot and had Sandro Lauper sent off in the second half.

Typically, it was Haaland who stole the show having overcome the ankle problem that forced him off against Bournemouth on Saturday.

Pep Guardiola could have rested his attacking spearhead with Sunday’s trip to Chelsea in mind but resisted and was rewarded with a clinical performance.

Six changes were made with Jeremy Doku, Rodri and Bernardo Silva among those dropped to the bench, but the returning Foden and Jack Grealish brought further firepower.

City, without getting anywhere top gear, were far too strong for the lacklustre visitors and dictated the game at their will.

Young Boys’ only spark came from their lively fans, who after making a colour-coordinated entrance in black or yellow depending on which tier they were seated, let off fireworks in the second half.

City should have taken an early lead after Mateo Kovavic played in Grealish with a superb through-ball and his cut-back presented Rico Lewis with a gilt-edged chance. Lewis attempted to sidefoot the ball home but Loris Benito cleared off the line.

Kovacic then linked well with Haaland, who was tripped on the edge of the area. Kyle Walker drilled the resulting free-kick at Anthony Racioppi and the keeper got up quickly to deny Foden on the rebound.

The inevitable opener came on 23 minutes after Matheus Nunes was tripped just inside the area by Lauper who – having been booked moments earlier – escaped a second yellow card on this occasion.

Erling Haaland scored the first of his two goals from the penalty spot

(PA)

Haaland made no mistake as he sent Racioppi the wrong way from the spot.

Haaland threatened to grab his second as he homed in on a Walker cross but a slight deflection off a defender wrong-footed him as he shaped to shoot.

City doubled their lead just before the interval as Foden cut inside from a superb Grealish pass and brushed off a challenge from Ulisses Garcia to drill in from a tight angle.

Haaland added the third early in the second half after a storming break from Lewis, lashing home powerfully on the turn after taking a touch just outside the area.

Young Boys’ woes were compounded moments later when Lauper finally received his second booking following a bad challenge on substitute Nathan Ake.

Haaland was withdrawn just after the hour and City professionally saw out the remainder of the game with Kovacic and substitute Kalvin Phillips having further chances.



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