We’re on a mission – Erling Haaland sends warning to Manchester City rivals

City are a point behind Premier League leaders Arsenal with a game in hand after Haaland’s four goals inspired their win over Wolves.

Erling Haaland smashed four goals past Wolves
Erling Haaland smashed four goals past Wolves (Richard Sellers/PA)

Erling Haaland warned Manchester City are fully focused on their title “mission” after his brilliant four-goal blast against Wolves.

The Norwegian enjoyed a stunning return to form as the champions cruised to a 5-1 victory at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday to remain on course for a historic fourth successive Premier League crown.

It was an emphatic response to leaders Arsenal’s defeat of Bournemouth earlier in the day and kept them within a point of the Gunners – who have played a game more – with three fixtures to play.

Haaland, who has now scored 36 goals in an injury-hit campaign, said: “It was a great game. It was important win, obviously, and fantastic to score four goals.

“It was a difficult game. They can play football so it was not easy but we were solid and we’re on a mission.

“Now focus on the next one. I’m confident but we have to keep going, we have to push and focus.”

City will have the chance to take top spot when they play at Fulham next Saturday.

They then travel to Tottenham before wrapping up their campaign with a home clash against West Ham.

Given City’s experience of prevailing in such circumstances, their form looks ominous for Arsenal. Pep Guardiola’s side are now unbeaten in 20 Premier League matches, 16 of which have been won, and they now have Haaland looking back to his best.

Wolves were overpowered by City
Wolves were overpowered by City (Richard Sellers/PA)

Haaland flattened Wolves with a first-half hat-trick – his ninth for City – with two penalties either side of a towering header. There was debate over the decision for the first spot-kick but the 3-0 interval scoreline reflected City’s clear superiority.

Hwang Hee-chan pulled one back for Wolves but Haaland replied immediately with a superb strike and substitute Julian Alvarez wrapped up the scoring.

Wolves boss Gary O’Neil admitted it was the wrong time of year to be running into City.

O’Neil said: “Manchester City in May, when they’re chasing down their fourth consecutive Premier League title, they’re fairly tough to stop and we were nowhere near at the level to test them.

“A lot of teams have come here and not been able to get a result and we’re added to the list. If we’d have been absolutely perfect it still might not have been enough.”