hen asked about Borussia Dortmund’s defensive resilience, Erling Haaland chose to remind his former club they did not stop him despite an otherwise resolute performance.
Heading into Wednesday’s Champions League meeting with Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium, Dortmund looked in bad shape. Thrashed by former manager Marco Rose in his new role at RB Leipzig, the Bundesliga giants had to improve were they to stop a free-scoring City side.
For large parts of the game, they did exactly that. City were limited to only two shots on target and were frustrated, given a bloody nose when Jude Bellingham scored a wonderfully instinctive header just before the hour mark.
Sadly for Dortmund, however, the Premier League champions needed only two chances to score. The first saw a returning John Stones lash in a 25-yard piledriver ten minutes before full-time, with Haaland then forcing through an acrobatic attempt following a picture-perfect Joao Cancelo cross carved with the outside of his boot.
That goal took Haaland up to 13 goals in eight competitive appearances for City and the 22-year-old reflected on a tough evening when speaking to BT Sport after the game.
“They didn’t stop me… I scored,” he said.
“They played well. They were good. I was quite sure I was going to be followed the whole game because Edin [Dortmund boss Terzic] knows me very well. Dortmund were really good today. Three points is what matters.”
Of the goal, Pep Guardiola told DAZN Germany: “I remember Johan Cruyff long time ago against Atlético Madrid in Camp Nou. He scored a quite similar goal.”