‘We’re coming:’ Erling Haaland scores five goals in single game to send ominous message to rivals

Erling Haaland got back to his frightening best on Tuesday as he scored five goals in Manchester City’s 6-2 FA Cup fifth-round win against Luton Town.

It was an unforgiving performance from the Norwegian superstar who scored his eighth hat-trick for Manchester City before half-time. The 23-year-old then added two more after the break to send his team into the quarterfinals.

It also served as an ominous message to City’s rivals this season, with the club still competing on three fronts – the FA Cup, English Premier League and the UEFA Champions League.

In truth, the team hasn’t quite clicked like it did during the historic treble-winning season last year, perhaps due to injuries to both Haaland and playmaker Kevin De Bruyne.

But the pair have been getting back to full fitness over the last few weeks and looked unstoppable on Tuesday – De Bruyne provided the assist for four of Haaland’s goals.

“What can I say? Really, really good. Erling is on fire and Kevin – the connection was perfect,” City manager Pep Guardiola told reporters after the game.

“Kevin needs players like Erling and Erling needs players like Kevin. We are not here without the other guys. A lot of credit for everyone.”

Kevin De Bruyne provided four assists for Haaland on an exciting night for Manchester City. - Justin Tallis/AFP/Getty Images
Kevin De Bruyne provided four assists for Haaland on an exciting night for Manchester City. - Justin Tallis/AFP/Getty Images

It took Haaland exactly three minutes to get on the scoresheet in what can be an intimidating atmosphere inside Luton’s Kenilworth Road. But the striker timed his movement to perfection to steer in De Bruyne’s cross from close range.

He then doubled his tally just after 17 minutes, chasing down De Bruyne’s through ball before smashing it between the goalkeeper’s legs.

Haaland secured his hat-trick after an almost carbon copy goal, with De Bruyne again sending the striker through who this time opted for a delicate chip over the keeper.

Luton did respond before the break, though, with Jordan Clark scoring a superb long-range effort which whistled into the top corner of the net in the 45th minute.

Clark then looked to make a game of it after scoring his second shortly after the restart, but it only served to fire City up.

Haaland tapped in his fourth goal just three minutes later, again combining with De Bruyne to re-establish a two-goal lead. He completed his sensational performance with another driven finish before the hour mark.

The forward has now scored 79 goals in his 83 appearances for Manchester City since making his debut in July 2022 and looks like he’s determined to continue his good form as the season reaches its climax.

City currently sits one point off leader Liverpool in the Premier League, but also faces competition from Arsenal which sits one point behind the Citizens in third. With Haaland in this form, though, the reigning champion will take some stopping.

“My fitness is getting there and I’m getting back to my best finally. I’m feeling good and it’s an amazing feeling,” Man of the Match Haaland told reporters after the win.

“It’s coming. We’re coming. Exciting times ahead. We are ready to attack.”

Mateo Kovačić’s goal rounded off another brilliant display for City. The only downside on the night was an apparent injury to Jack Grealish, who has struggled for fitness this season.

While it waits to discover its next opponent in the FA Cup, City faces a potentially tricky fixture in the Premier League on Sunday when it hosts local rival Manchester United.

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