Erling Haaland scored twice — together with from a spectacular scissor-kick volley — to steer Manchester Metropolis to a 4-1 victory over Southampton within the English Premier League and maintain the strain on Arsenal within the title race in a single day.
The Norway striker broke the impasse with a close-range header within the forty fifth minute earlier than Jack Grealish made it 2-0 after the restart.
Haaland’s league-leading thirtieth purpose was a lovely end along with his again to purpose as he met Grealish’s cross.
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The hosts had been in a position to claw just one again by means of Sekou Mara.
That was shortly cancelled out when Kevin De Bruyne was fouled for a penalty, permitting Haaland’s substitute, Julian Alvarez, to attain the spot kick.
Metropolis moved 5 factors behind Arsenal, which visits Liverpool on Monday morning.
Considered one of Haaland’s 28 objectives going into Saturday’s sport got here within the reverse fixture at Etihad Stadium in October in opposition to a Saints group then managed by Ralph Hasenhuttl.
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Two managers later, and with the edges separated by 41 factors, Southampton — now led by Ruben Selles — appeared to get one thing began early on a sunny south coast night when Carlos Alcaraz took possession on the proper of the world however discovered himself and not using a viable choice on the far publish as he despatched the ball throughout the face of purpose.
Metropolis examined goalkeeper Gavin Bazunu inside the primary 5 minutes as Ilkay Gundogan discovered Grealish, who pressured save with a drive from 15 meters out.
The guests had been troubled when an alert Kamaldeen Sulemana intercepted De Bruyne’s quick nook inside his personal half and broke free, with Nathan Ake in pursuit. Sulemana charged into Metropolis’s half however misplaced management on the finish of his run, permitting goalkeeper Ederson to smother the ball.
Although Metropolis loved over 70 per cent possession, the hosts did effectively to largely shut down Haaland, who had taken solely 4 touches because the match approached the 40-minute mark. He doubled that tally by halftime, lacking a header earlier than making one rely as he linked with De Bruyne’s cross from the left and nodded his twenty ninth purpose of the season — six greater than Southampton had collectively scored — previous Bazunu.
Metropolis missed an early probability to double its benefit after the restart when Grealish minimize the ball again to Gundogan, who drove into the world however fired simply vast of the suitable publish.
However it was not lengthy earlier than Grealish, who had been brilliant all through the primary interval, threatened once more as he despatched a pointy strike at Bazunu, who made the preliminary low cease however couldn’t dangle on to the rebound.
That proved expensive because the England worldwide pounced and fired dwelling earlier than, 10 minutes later, turning supplier when he bumped into the world earlier than crossing to Haaland, who completed spectacularly.
Saints ensured the guests wouldn’t head dwelling with a clear sheet when substitute Moussa Djenepo neatly evaded two opponents and fed Mara, who despatched a low strike previous Ederson.
It took Metropolis simply three minutes to revive its three-goal benefit when Kyle Walker-Peters introduced down De Bruyne. The referee pointed to the spot and Alvarez, who had come on for Haaland within the seventy fifth, transformed.
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