Leeds 1-3 Manchester City: Main Talking Points As Erling Haaland Makes More Premier League History At Elland Road

    Just trying to catch up on the title chase, Manchester City marked their return to Premier League duty with a 3-1 win away at Leeds on Wednesday night.

    Having overtaken Newcastle and reduced Arsenal’s lead at the top of the table to five points, Josep Guardiola’s team were more than worthy winners here, as Rodri’s goals and Erling Haaland’s brace delivered an attractive win.

    While Pascal Struik could secure the finish in the stands when his 73rd-minute header gave the hosts a consolation kick on Wednesday, the relegation breaker simply couldn’t stop the reigning champions.

    While Leeds may have managed to hold off the Premier League giants until stoppage time in the first half, it was City’s attacking record holder who stole most of the headlines at Elland Road.

    Two teams battling at opposite ends of the Premier League table, we’ve covered key topics of discussion following Wednesday’s showdown in Yorkshire.

    Guardiola got what he wanted

    Celebrating their comeback from last week’s World Cup break when they pulled off a thrilling 3-2 victory over Liverpool while on EFL Cup duties, Guardiola demanded a similar performance from his side here.

    Heading into the holiday break with a stunning 2-1 home defeat to Brentford on November 12, the former Barcelona manager knows his side can’t afford more mistakes.

    Watching Arsenal eventually break into a 3-1 home win against West Ham on Boxing Day, the Sky Blues were simply looking to avoid a potential banana peel away from the Etihad on Wednesday night.

    With many still believing that Guardiola’s superstars are still top contenders to defend their crown in 2023, City also continue to build a reputation for their away success.

    A more than deserved 3-1 win here, City have only lost one of their previous 25 Premier League matches away from the Etihad – a streak that started on 15 August.

    Haaland makes even more Premier League history

    With the entire World Cup on hold with Norway unable to book a winter ticket to Qatar, Premier League defenders across the country will be wary of what Haaland has in store for 2023.

    After scoring in a 3-2 EFL Cup win against Liverpool last week, the former Borussia Dortmund striker simply picked up where he left off before the winter break.

    After all, having left Elland Road with another double on Wednesday night and already with one hand on this season’s Golden Boot, Haaland only continues to break records every week.

    Continuing to highlight his status as Europe’s deadliest shooter, the 22-year-old has already landed 25 shots since arriving in Manchester and believes his stock is at an all-time high.

    In fact, while Haaland may have felt he should have left Yorkshire with another hat-trick to his name here, the 23-cap international has written another chapter in the Premier League record book.

    Despite making just 14 Premier League appearances this year, Haaland is the fastest player to score 20 top-flight goals in a season.

    Leeds are gearing up for their next relegation

    In the run-up to the World Cup winter break, when Leeds lost 4-3 to Tottenham on 12 November, Leeds knew they were up against a formidable challenge here.

    While Jesse Marsh’s team may have put on a very rough game until Rodri opened the scoring in stoppage time in the first half, the former RB Leipzig boss saw his side struggle to find a similar level after the break.

    While White may have managed to find some much-needed momentum in early November, Wednesday’s hosts seem destined for another relegation in the New Year.

    While the Yorkshire team may have almost clung to their top flight status last season, Leeds are heading into the weekend’s fixtures just two points away from slipping into the bottom three.

    Now with just a couple of Premier League wins in their last 12 attempts – a streak that dates back to August 21 – there could be some growing pressure on Marsh’s shoulders in 2023.

    Match report:

    Leeds: Mellier, Nissen, Koch, Cooper, Strake, Greenwood, Roca, Forshaw, Rodrigo, Aaronson, Gnonto

    Subscriptions: Ayling, Gyabi, Llorente, Gelhardt, Klich

    Manchester: Ederson, Lewis, Stones, Akanji, Ake, Gundogan, Rodri, De Bruyne, Grealish, Mahrez, Haaland

    Subscriptions: Palmer, Foden, Canselu

    Goals: Leeds: Strudzhik (73′) – Manchester City: Rodri (45+1′), Haaland (51′, 64′)

    Yellow cards: Leeds: Greenwood, Gnonto, Klich – Manchester City: Palmer, Lewis, Rodri

    Red cards: N/A

    Judge: Stuart Attwell

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