Football

Dortmund striker Haaland inspired by Mbappe's treble against Barcelona

Dortmund striker bags a brace after PSG forward's hat-trick against Barca

Borussia Dortmund striker Erling Haaland said his brace in their 3-2 win over Sevilla in the Champions League yesterday morning (Singapore time) was inspired by watching Paris Saint-Germain striker Kylian Mbappe score a hat-trick against Barcelona.

French striker Mbappe had set Europe's elite competition alight a day earlier with a stunning treble in a 4-1 drubbing of Barca, but Haaland was also out to make his mark, netting two superbly taken goals to give his side the edge in the Round of 16, first leg in Seville.

"I love the Champions League and, when I saw Mbappe score the hat-trick yesterday, I got free motivation, so thanks to him," said the 20-year-old.

Haaland's brace moved him to a remarkable 18 goals in 13 Champions League matches. He is on course to overtake Mbappe as the player to score the most goals in Europe's top competition before his 21st birthday.

Mbappe, now 23, struck 19 Champions League goals before turning 21 and Haaland does not celebrate his birthday until July.

The Norwegian has now scored 10 times for the German side in seven Champions League games, unseating Roy Makaay as the player to score 10 goals in the competition for one team in the least amount of games.

Makaay scored 10 goals in as many Champions League games for Bayern Munich from 2003 to 2004.

Yesterday morning's game at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan Stadium had started well for the hosts, though, with Suso opening accounts in the seventh minute, his shot deflecting in off Mats Hummels.

Dortmund equalised 12 minutes later as Haaland held the ball up on the right before feeding Mahmoud Dahoud, who scored from outside the area.

Eight minutes later, it was 2-1.

Collecting the ball near the halfway line, Haaland charged towards goal, played a one-two with Jadon Sancho before placing the ball past Yassine Bounou.

He struck again two minutes before half-time, slotting home first-time after Marco Reus had stolen the ball from the feet of Alejandro Gomez.

However, Sevilla got a potential lifeline six minutes from time when Oscar Rodriguez's free-kick was turned into the net by Luuk de Jong.

"We didn't deserve to lose but, in the end, they had one of the best players in the world up front... he made the difference in three situations which could have been avoided," said Sevilla coach Julen Lopetegui.

In the other Round of 16, first-leg game yesterday morning, Cristiano Ronaldo's first game for Juventus in his native Portugal ended in a 2-1 defeat.

Mehdi Taremi put Porto in front after 63 seconds when Rodrigo Bentancur misjudged a back pass, setting up the Iranian striker for a simple finish from close range.

Moussa Marega made it 2-0 right after the break, but Federico Chiesa pulled a goal back for Juventus with eight minutes to go. - AFP, REUTERS

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