BERN, Switzerland (AP) — Erling Haaland ended his barren streak in the Champions League with two second-half goals to help Manchester City beat Young Boys 3-1 on Wednesday and earn a third straight win in its title defense.
Haaland hadn’t scored in his previous five matches in the competition, stretching back to last season’s semifinals in May, but he ended that improbable run by blasting a spot kick down the middle in the 67th to put City 2-1 ahead.
The Norway striker wrapped up the victory by curling a shot into the top corner with his weaker right foot in the 86th minute.
It’s now 37 goals in 33 Champions League games for the scoring phenom, who is now into double figures (11) for the season in all competitions as he looks to follow up a debut campaign for City when he netted 52 times.
Before his penalty, it had been a frustrating evening for Haaland and City — restricted to half-chances in a first half that ended goalless on the artificial pitch at Wankdorf Stadium.
A tap-in by Manuel Akanji eventually gave City the lead in the 48th, only for the titleholders to concede four minutes later when Meschack Elia ran in behind City’s defense and scooped a finish over the stranded Ederson.
City is making the most of being handed a benign group in its title defense, having already beaten Red Star Belgrade and Leipzig. Another win at home to Young Boys in two weeks and Pep Guardiola’s team will have qualified with two matches to spare, allowing City to focus on a tough-looking upcoming Premier League schedule.
That begins with the Manchester derby on Sunday.
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The Associated Press