Sunday, 28 May, 2023


Haaland hits FA Cup hat-trick as Man City rout Burnley 

Sports Desk |
Update: 2023-03-19 11:38:39
Haaland hits FA Cup hat-trick as Man City rout Burnley  [photo collected]

Erling Haaland scored his second hat-trick in five days as Manchester City cruised into the FA Cup semi-finals by hammering Championship leaders Burnley at Etihad Stadium.

Haaland followed his five-goal haul against RB Leipzig in the Champions League by claiming another three to take his tally for the season to 42.

He is just two short of the record held by Ruud van Nistelrooy and Mohamed Salah for most goals in a season for an English top-flight club during the Premier League era.

Julian Alvarez added two goals and substitute Cole Palmer also scored on a sobering night for former City skipper Vincent Kompany, whose Burnley side have surged 13 points clear at the top of the Championship.

The Clarets did well in the first half but could not match Haaland's staggering efficiency in front of goal.

City opened up in the second period though, underlining the chasm in class between England's top two divisions.

"He is at the right place for his development because he is still very young," said Burnley boss Kompany of Haaland. "He will get better - he has the right coach and the right mindset.

"I have played against the greats. They are part of a special elite. The very best find it difficult to stop these guys. They keep finding a way. He looks like a superstar who is willing to improve and that is exciting to see. The goalscoring record puts you in a certain bracket - it is the hardest part of the game."

It will be City's sixth semi-final appearance in seven seasons under Pep Guardiola, and on this form few will argue against them lifting the trophy for only the second time in that period as they retain hopes of completing the Treble of the Premier League, FA Cup and Champions League.

The draw for the FA Cup semi-finals takes place on Sunday following Brighton's tie against Grimsby Town (14:15 GMT), live on BBC One.

Haaland now has an incredible six hat-tricks in his debut season in English football - already half as many as brilliant Argentine Sergio Aguero scored in his ten-year City career.

Considering City would play another 18 games if they reach both the FA Cup and Champions League finals, it is not beyond the realms of possibility the Norwegian will finish the campaign with about 60 goals, which has never come close to being achieved in modern times.

The problem for defences is he has so many attributes.

"Haaland is a beast," said Premier League record goalscorer Alan Shearer on Match of the Day. "He is a goalscoring machine. He lives and breathes goals.

"If he doesn't score he doesn't sleep at night. He wants another one, then another one, then another one.

"He's fantastic, and this team must be a dream with the chances they create. He might get 50 goals, maybe even 60. It's bonkers."

Source: BBC

BDST: 1136 HRS, MAR 19, 2023

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