Haaland hammers in five, with a little help from de Bruyne

February 28 – Manchester City’s Erling Haaland fired back into action with a five-goal display against Luton in the FA Cup on Tuesday night, making him the first player to score five or more for a top-flight club in the FA Cup in more than 50 years.

The last time a player hit that tally was in Manchester United red, when George Best netted five versus Northampton Town in 1970.

Tuesday’s emphatic 6-2 victory over Luton, who gave City a good game when they last met in December, has reminded the Premier League of the Cityzens’ lethal attacking potential after scoring just three goals in their last three Premier League games.

Haaland looked poised to match last season’s record-breaking goal tally at the start of the season but has since faltered in form, partly due to a reoccurring injury. The Norwegian still sits top of the golden boot race in the Premier League, but has only scored three league goals since the start of the year.

“It’s coming, we’re coming,” Haaland said after the game.

“My fitness? I am getting back to my best. Finally I am feeling good. It’s an amazing feeling. Exciting times ahead. We are ready to attack.”

Kevin De Bruyne, who was absent for City’s first half of the season due to injury, was also firing on all cylinders, picking up four assists as he and Haaland re-cemented themselves as the most dangerous attacking duo in world football.

“Erling is on fire and Kevin… the connection was perfect,” Guardiola said after the match. “Kevin needs players like Erling and Erling needs players like Kevin.”

Manchester City will host the Manchester derby this weekend in a crucial tie to close the slender one-point gap to league leaders Liverpool. Erling Haaland has a good record against Man Utd, scoring a brace against the Red Devils in October and a hattrick at the Etihad in last season’s home fixture.

Contact the writer of this story, Harry Ewing, at moc.l1713513386labto1713513386ofdlr1713513386owedi1713513386sni@g1713513386niwe.1713513386yrrah1713513386