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Lugano pull further ahead

Lugano's Alain Gaspoz (left) wins a tussle in the match against FC Zurich Keystone

Lugano have stretched their lead at the top of the Swiss football league to four points, following a 2-1 away win over FC Zürich.

A solid team performance and efficient South American finishing ensured victory with the club’s Argentinian strikers Christian Gimenez and Julio Hernan Rossi grabbing a goal apiece.

A penalty scored by Patrick Bühlmann gave FC Zürich hope but wasn’t enough to prevent Gilbert Gress’s first home defeat since taking over as manager.

Lugano were not even troubled by the loss of a player, completing the match with 10 men following Dario Rota’s dismissal for a second yellow card. The win lifted the Ticino side clear of Grasshoppers Zurich who moved into second place on Saturday with a 3-1 away win over Neuchatel Xamax.

Reigning champions St Gallen lost ground after drawing away at Aarau in Sunday’s only other match.

Like Lugano, Marcel Koller’s team had to play with 10 men after midfielder Patrick Winkler was sent off in the 54th minute. St Gallen seemed to relish the extra space though, taking the lead four minutes later through Romanian striker Ionel Gane.

But just as the visitors prepared to celebrate Aarau equalised. With just three minutes of time remaining, French defender Olivier Baudry raced on to a loose ball in the St Gallen area and put it past goalkeeper Jörg Stiel.

The strike ended a four match losing sequence at home for Aarau and lifted the side into ninth place. Sion remain in eighth place after the flooding in canton Valais caused their game against Yverdon to be postponed.

swissinfo with agencies

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR