Manchester City 6-2 Luton Town (Feb 27, 2024) Game Analysis

Erling Haaland roared back to his best form with a five-goal salvo as Manchester City thumped Luton Town 6-2 at Kenilworth Road to reach the quarterfinals of the FA Cup on Tuesday.

Luton had no answer to the marauding Norwegian who bagged his eighth City hat trick before half-time and then scored twice more after the break to kill off a stirring Luton revival.

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Haaland is the first player to score five or more goals in an FA Cup match for a top-division club since George Best netted six for Manchester United against Northampton Town in 1970, according to Stats Perform.

The 23-year-old Haaland’s first four goals were all created by Kevin De Bruyne. The Belgian is just the second player to assist four goals in an FA Cup match for a Premier League club since 2004-05, following on from former City teammate Ilkay Gündogan in 2019, according to ESPN Stats & Information research.

Erling Haaland and Kevin De Bruyne combined for Manchester City’s first four goals against Luton.

JUSTIN TALLIS/AFP via Getty Images

Mateo Kovacic also got on the scoresheet for holders City, who are unbeaten in 18 games in all competitions.

Luton did threaten an unlikely comeback when Jordan Clark found the top corner with a sublime effort on the stroke of half-time and netted again early in the second half to make it 3-2. But a strong City side instantly found another gear to cruise into the draw for the last eight.

The only blemish for City, who face Manchester United in the Premier League on Sunday, was an injury to Jack Grealish who was forced off in the opening period.

Haaland had scored only five goals in his previous 11 appearances for City — a spell interrupted by a foot injury that some suggested had taken the edge off his game.

But he answered any doubters in emphatic fashion with a sensational display of centre forward play.

City meant business from the start and went ahead in the fourth minute as Matheus Nunes played in De Bruyne who cut back a perfect pass for Haaland to fire past Tim Krul.

De Bruyne played Haaland through in the 18th minute to make it 2-0 and Haaland’s hat-trick goal was almost a carbon copy as he again surged on to a De Bruyne pass to dink a shot over Krul.

Clark gave the home fans some cheer when he curled a perfect shot past Stefan Ortega and Luton punished City for some slack defending just after the restart with Clark finishing well.

But Haaland tapped in a De Bruyne pass a couple of minutes later and then grabbed his fifth from Bernardo Silva‘s assist before being substituted, much to Luton’s relief.

Information from Reuters contributed to this report.

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