Erling Haaland is not human! Winners and losers as Man City superstar enters terminator mode in RB Leipzig thrashing

Comments (0)
Erling Haaland Manchester City 2022-23
Getty Images
On a record-breaking night for the Norwegian striker, he scored five to help ease Pep Guardiola's side into the Champions League quarter-finals

The Champions League is an occasion to show the world what you're made of, and Erling Haaland did just that with a world-beating display as Manchester City walloped RB Leipzig 7-0 on Tuesday.

Haaland became the first player to score five times in a Champions League knockout match since Lionel Messi in 2012, and that was not the only record the Norwegian broke.

He became the youngest and fastest player to score 30 goals in Europe's elite competition, and also made club history as he became City's highest scorer in a single season on 39 goals with three months to spare - surpassing Tommy Johnson's 38 goals during the 1928-29 season.

🏆 TOP STORY: Liverpool's 'small club' celebrations slammed

📣 HAVE YOUR SAY: Are Man Utd doomed without Casemiro?

🚨 MUST READ: Where are the NXGN 2017 wonderkids now?

Kevin De Bruyne also responded to criticism from Pep Guardiola with a virtuoso performance, but it was a night to forget for Leipzig, while critics of video referees have yet more ammunition for their cause.

GOAL breaks down the winners & losers from a historic night at the Etihad Stadium...

  1. WINNER: Erling Haaland
    (C)Getty Images

    WINNER: Erling Haaland

    He sure made up for not getting on the scoresheet in the first leg...

    Haaland looked lively from minute one, and even if this was not the most spectacular hat-trick he has scored, it was a demonstration of his insatiable hunger for scoring.

    Barely a minute after expertly dispatching his second penalty in as many games, he charged down Janis Blaswich and forced the Leipzig goalkeeper to kick long. City broke immediately, and when De Bruyne's shot cannoned off the crossbar, Haaland was there to score the rebound.

    He was not sated with two goals, and threw himself at the loose ball after Ruben Dias' effort had come off the post to complete his hat-trick before half-time.

    He sent more records tumbling, overtaking Kylian Mbappe as the youngest player to reach 30 Champions League goals and Ruud van Nistelrooy as the fastest player to hit the milestone.

    He netted twice more after the break, showing superb aerial ability and speed of reaction in the area.

    In the end, it was a shame that Guardiola decided to withdraw him before the midway point of the second half!

  2. LOSER: The handball law & VAR
    Getty Images

    LOSER: The handball law & VAR

    City hardly needed any help given their utter dominance, yet the penalty they were awarded to get the ball rolling was another ludicrous call by the VAR officials.

    No-one in the area noticed that Benjamin Henrichs had barely brushed the ball with his arm as he battled in the air against Rodri, but it was no surprise that referee Slavko Vincic was ordered to go and review the play on the pitchside monitor.

    These types of marginal, accidental handballs have kept being given in the Champions League since VAR was introduced in 2018-19, and the competition is far worse off as a result.

  3. WINNER: Kevin De Bruyne
    Getty Images

    WINNER: Kevin De Bruyne

    Pep Guardiola gave De Bruyne a gentle rebuke in the pre-match press conference by encouraging the Belgium playmaker to "to do the easy principles well".

    De Bruyne did everything well here. He ripped into Leipzig's usually solid defence from all areas, terrorising them down the wings and through the middle.

    He set up Haaland's second goal with a thumping effort off the crossbar and it was only right that he ended the night with a splendid strike of his own.

  4. LOSER: Marco Rose

    The Leipzig manager did have a depleted squad and was missing key midfielder Xaver Schlager and, more importantly, standout forward Christopher Nkunku.

    But even so, his side played into City's hands, insisting on playing the ball out deep from defence, even when they were being pressed into submission.

    There are ways to beat this City team - this was not one of them.

  5. WINNER: City fans who go to Champions League nights

    It's no secret that a fair few Man City fans still haven't taken to the Champions League.

    Attendances on European nights are often far lower than for Premier League games, and Pep Guardiola has had to encourage supporters to show a bit more interest in the competition.

    Tuesday's display, then, was a reward for the City supporters who loyally attend all the Champions League matches and love seeing their team compete against the top sides on the continent.

    And who doesn't love watching their side score seven goals and their top scorer make history in the game's most prestigious stage?

  6. LOSER: Josko Gvardiol
    Getty Images

    LOSER: Josko Gvardiol

    Croatia defender Gvardiol has been repeatedly linked with a move to Manchester City, and is just the type of versatile player Guardiola loves.

    So this should have been an occasion to show the Catalan coach what he was made of.

    Gvardiol can hardly be blamed for the result, but the fact he was powerless to stop the goal-glut does not exactly help his case for City to sign him up.