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Haaland scores twice as Manchester City stay perfect in Champions League group

Erling Haaland broke out of a mini-UEFA Champions League scoring slump with a pair of goal to help Manchester City secure a 3-1 victory away to Swiss side BSC Young Boys on Wednesday.

[ MORE: Champions League tables ]

With three wins from three games, Man City (9 points), sit atop of Group G at the halfway point, three points clear of RB Leipzig. Pep Guardiola’s side will host Leipzig in a likely group decider in matchweek 5 (Nov. 28).

Manchester City enjoyed a near-monopoly on possession in the first half (75 percent) as they out-passed Young Boys 369-100, with a 195-31 advantage in the opposition half (18-4 in the opposition penalty area), and they put six of 10 shots on target. It was all very methodical and composed from the reigning European champions, but ultimately fruitless.

[ MORE: Champions League schedule ]

The deadlock was broken not long after halftime, when Manuel Akanji cleaned up a bouncing ball inside the six-yard box to record his first Manchester City goal in the 48th minute. The lead lasted just four minutes, though, as Young Boys hit back through an unexpected counter-attack which ended with winger Meschack Elia lobbing the out-rushing Ederson from 20 yards out.

Young Boys suddenly found themselves on the front foot and briefly pressed forward for another, but Man City regained the lead in the 67th minute after Rodri was fouled inside the penalty area. Haaland stepped to the spot, sent the goalkeeper diving one way and cushioned the ball down the middle for his first Champions League goal of the season.

Julian Alvarez put the ball in the back of the net a few minutes after Haaland restored the lead, but the goal was eventually ruled out by video review. Never fear, Man City fans, for Haaland hammered home a right-footed curler four minutes before full-time.

What’s next?

Manchester City will continue their Premier League title defense with the Manchester derby, away to Man United on Sunday. Their Champions League defense resumes with Wednesday’s reverse fixture, hosting Young Boys at Etihad Stadium on Nov. 7.

Player ratings - Newcastle vs Borussia Dortmund

Young Boys vs Manchester City, final score: 1-3

Goalscorers: Manuel Akanji (48'), Meschack Elia (52'), Erling Haaland (67' - PK, 86')

48th minute - GOAL - Manuel Akanji bundles the opener home just after halftime

52nd minute - GOAL - Young Boys pull level as Ederson lobbed from outside the box

67th minute - GOAL - Erling Haaland converts from the penalty spot to reclaim lead

86th minute - GOAL - Erling Haaland puts the game to bed with a fine finish

How to watch Young Boys vs Manchester City live, stream link, start time

Date: Wednesday, October 25
Kick off: 3pm ET
How to watch: Paramount+ and TUDN USA

Young Boys starting lineup

Racioppi — Blum, Camara, Benito, Garcia — Lauper, Monteiro, Niasse, Ugrinic — Itten, Elia

Focus on Young Boys

They currently sit second in the Swiss Super League, two points behind leaders FC Zurich but they do have a game in-hand. Young Boys are becoming regulars in the Champions League, as this is their second appearance in the group stage over the last three years. As we mentioned, Itten and Nsame carry their goal threat and the atmosphere at the Wankdorf Stadium will be electric. Former Chicago Fire and USMNT U17 head coach Raphael Wicky is in charge of Young Boys and he led them to the Swiss league and cup double last season.

Manchester City starting lineup

Ederson — Akanji, Dias, Ake — Rodri, Lewis — Doku, Nunes, Kovacic, Grealish — Haaland

Focus on Manchester City

City will likely rotate their lineup ahead of the derby and Guardiola always keeps us guessing. The likes of Rico Lewis, Jack Grealish, Nathan Ake and Ruben Dias are all likely to start, while Manuel Akanji should also play in his homeland as he was sent off in the win over Brighton at the weekend and will therefore be suspended for the Manchester derby at Old Trafford this Sunday. In injury news, Kevin de Bruyne is the only player out for City as he continues to recover from a hamstring injury he picked up on the opening day of the season.