Premier League: Haaland hits hat-trick in City's comeback victory

Manchester City's Erling Braut Haaland celebrates scoring their fourth goal. Photo: Reuters/ Craig Brough

Manchester City's Erling Haaland struck a second half hat-trick as the Premier League champions came back from two goals down to beat Crystal Palace 4-2 at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday.

The Norwegian, who averaged almost a goal per game in the Bundesliga for Borussia Dortmund before his move to City in June, has now scored six times in his opening four league matches for Pep Guardiola's side.

The win moves City to the top of the table, level on 10 points with Brighton & Hove Albion. Palace are 13th with four points from their opening four games.

Haaland was given a standing ovation when he was substituted six minutes from the end but at halftime City were staring at a possible repeat of their 2-0 home loss to Palace last season.

An own goal from John Stones in the fourth minute put Patrick Vieira's south London side ahead and then the visitors doubled their lead when an unmarked Joachim Andersen powered in a header from an Eberechi Eze corner in the 21st minute.

City struggled to find their fluency but the almost inevitable comeback started in the 53rd when Bernardo Silva cut in from the right and his low shot took a slight deflection and beat goalkeeper Vicente Guaita.

Guardiola then made a double substitution and moved Phil Foden to left back and within a minute he had delivered a pinpoint cross which Haaland met with a fine glancing header.

The striker then turned the ball in from close range after a clever move inspired by Silva and saved the best for last -- showing Ilkay Gundogan the pass he wanted to run onto and then holding off Joel Ward as he fired into the bottom corner.


Manchester United's Bruno Fernandes celebrates scoring their first goal with Scott McTominay. Photo: Reuters/ Hannah Mckay

Fernandes on target as United edge Saints
Southampton: Manchester United posted back-to-back wins and ended a run of bad form away from home with a 1-0 victory at Southampton in the Premier League on Saturday thanks to a second-half strike from Bruno Fernandes.

United's second win on the bounce halted a seven-match losing streak on the road stretching back to last season and provisionally lifted them to sixth place in the table after four games.

With an unchanged lineup after their 2-1 win against Liverpool, United should have gone ahead in the 19th minute but were denied by Gavin Bazunu and Armel Bella-Kotchap, who kept out Anthony Elanga and Christian Eriksen from close range.

Bella-Kotchap nearly gave Southampton the lead after bringing down a James Ward-Prowse corner only to blaze his shot over the bar on the half-hour mark.

Eriksen was a lively presence with his penetrating through balls but United struggled to unlock Southampton, who had Bella-Kotchap to thank for his timely intervention when Elanga was through on goal after linking up with the Danish playmaker.

United began strongly after the break and their pressure told in the 55th minute when Fernandes, leading the side in the absence of Harry Maguire, scored with a low volley from the edge of the box after being expertly fed by Diogo Dalot.

Southampton had a penalty appeal turned down minutes later when a high ball appeared to have struck Scott McTominay on the arm before David de Gea made a superb reflex save to keep out a header from Joe Aribo.

United boss Erik ten Hag turned to Cristiano Ronaldo and Casemiro, who arrived from Real Madrid earlier in the week, to see out the game, but the hosts did not go down without a fight.

They dominated the ball in the closing stages and substitute Sekou Mara almost found an equaliser deep into stoppage time but his overhead effort was cleared off the line as United held on for the win.

Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuettl was proud of his players despite the narrow defeat, adding that his side deserved more from the game.

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