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Draw keeps Sion on top

Sion's Ogerio Moreira clashes with Neuchatel's Dorjee Tsawa during Saturday's goalless draw

(Keystone)

Sion have held onto their unexpected early lead in the Swiss football league championship, after drawing 0-0 away to Neuchatel Xamax on Saturday.

Having played three matches so far, the team from canton Valais are now one point clear of FC Zurich, the only side in the top division with a 100 percent record. On Saturday Georges Bregy's men won their second match of the season, beating St Gallen 3-2.

On a night with plenty of goals to savour, last year's league runners-up Lugano romped to victory over the team which pipped them to the title, Grasshoppers Zurich.

The Ticinese side ended the night 5-3 winners, with Christian Gimenez grabbing two goals in what is set to be his last game for Lugano before his planned transfer to Basel.

In Saturday's other league action, Aarau celebrated their first win of the season, beating Lucerne 3-2 at home. Lucerne, who are still looking for their first three points of the campaign, were not helped by the dismissal of Ohrel in the 67th minute.

Joint bottom with Servette in the early league standings, Lausanne found some welcome diversion from domestic action on Saturday by scraping an away draw against Slovenian side NK Celje in the Intertoto Cup.

Trailing 1-0 with less than 15 minutes remaining, Lausanne seemed in further difficulty when their new Brazilian player Isaïas was sent off for hitting an opponent in the face. But the reduction to ten men seemed only to spur on the team from canton Vaud, who snatched an equaliser through 17-year-old midfielder Xavier Marguairaz just three minutes later.

Back in Switzerland, Basel were able to beat Dutch side Heerenveen in the first leg of their Intertoto Cup match. But after going 2-0 up in the first half with goals from Koumantarakis and Hakan Yakin, Basel may come to regret a poor second half performance in which the Dutch team were able to pull a goal back.

If the two Swiss teams can come safely through their respective second leg ties, they will come up against one another in the next round. The winner of that match would still have to win one more round before securing a place in the UEFA Cup competition.

swissinfo with agencies

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