Unstoppable Haaland nets four as Man City rout Wolves


Nicol on 4-goal Haaland: 'How can you defend against that?!'

Steve Nicol can't believe the athleticism on show from Erling Haaland after his four goals in Manchester City's 5-1 win over Wolves.

Manchester City's Erling Haaland struck four times as the club remained on course to win a fourth successive Premier League title with a 5-1 thrashing of Wolverhampton Wanderers on Saturday.

Hours after Arsenal's 3-0 win over Bournemouth, Pep Guardiola's men responded with a resounding victory that pulled them to within a point of the north Londoners at the top of the standings, but with a game in hand.

- Stream on ESPN+: LaLiga, Bundesliga, more (U.S.)

Arsenal have 83 points with two fixtures remaining in one of the tightest title races in years, while City have 82, but three games to play.

"Nine [more] points, we will be champions. Seven points, six points, three points, Arsenal will win the Premier League," Guardiola said. "If we win the games, we'll be champs, the players know it and we have to do it again and again and again."

Haaland, 23, -- who boosted his league scoring lead to 25 with the first four-goal haul of his career -- converted from the penalty spot in the 12th minute after Rayan Aït-Nouri's late tackle took Josko Gvardiol down in the box.

The Norway international doubled City's lead in the 35th minute when he soared high to head home at the far post from Rodri's cross.

"That's a beautiful goal. My father [Alf-Inge Haaland, who played for City] is going to be happy with that one," Haaland told Sky Sports.

Erling Haaland remains on track for a second consecutive Premier League Golden Boot.
Photo by James Gill - Danehouse/Getty Images

"Not bad, 25 goals this season. We keep going."

Haaland converted again from the spot just before half-time after he was clipped from behind by Nélson Semedo in the area. Hwang Hee-Chan pulled one back for Wolves in the 53rd minute with the visitors' only shot on target.

But a minute later, Haaland smothered any hopes of a comeback with his fourth.

The goal-scoring machine -- who missed nearly two months earlier this season with a foot injury but seems to be finding form again at the perfect time -- controlled a diagonal pass in the air from Phil Foden before slicing inside and curling a shot into the far corner.

"He was injured, to get back to best form you need time," Guardiola said. "But happy for his performance, for his exceptional goals, in the penalties as well because we know how some days it is not easy ... Really pleased for him."

Substitute Julián Álvarez completed City's scoring in the 85th minute.

Wolves, whose manager Gary O'Neill was serving a touchline ban, looked nothing like the team that edged City 2-1 earlier in the season.

"I thought we damaged ourselves mostly," said O'Neil, whose squad are 11th in the standings. "If you make errors against these guys, they'll punish you. We made too many errors and Manchester City were very clinical.

"It was a tough afternoon, which we knew potentially it would be."

City play two away games at Fulham and Tottenham Hotspur then close the season at home against West Ham United. Arsenal travel to Old Trafford next to play Manchester United before hosting Everton on the final day.