Haaland‘s double brace crumbles Everton to earn second spot. Manchester City defeated Everton 2-0 with two goals from Erling Haaland, who returned from injury to lead his side to the top of the Premier League.
Haaland’s brace put City on 52 points, ahead of Liverpool, who later reclaimed the lead with a win over Burnley. Everton remain in the relegation zone in 18th place.
The visitors frustrated City’s defence for the majority of the game until Haaland netted his 15th and 16th goals of the season, with a fierce strike off a ricocheted corner and a run onto a pass from Kevin De Bruyne which he slotted past Everton’s Jordan Pickford.
His brace marked his first goal since November after returning from his foot injury. The 10th successive win in all competitions, and sixth in the Premier League for City, has displayed their impressive form as they return to top spot for the first time since 24 November. Everton, meanwhile, have gone seven league games without a win.
City found Everton’s gameplan difficult to break down for more than an hour, but their resistance ultimately could not hold.
Although they forced defensive errors from City in the first half, a lack of accuracy and creativity in front of goal let them down, aided by striker Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s 18-game goal drought.
Their inability to make the most of the limited chances created meant they left Manchester without any reward for a battling performance.
This was in contrast to Haaland, whose goals ended his longest scoreless run in the Premier League, and Kevin de Bruyne, whose return from injury has boosted City’s passing tempo and ability to punish tired legs. While City’s time at the top may be limited, an in-form Haaland has made them even harder to stop.