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St Gallen win Swiss football championship as Basel slip up

Overlooked and under-rated at the start of the season, St Gallen have finally claimed the prize which they had barely dared dream of. An 1-1 draw for Basel at Servette Geneva confirmed it - St Gallen are champions!

Thousands of fans had gathered on the streets of St Gallen on Sunday to prepare for the town's first championship in 96 years. Many crowded around the screens provided by Swiss television, broadcasting the closing stages of the Basel match.

It was a nail-biting wait for the fans though as Basel led for most of the match. All hopes of St Gallen being crowned champions looked to be on hold again, until Servette's Ermin Siljak slipped the ball into the back of the Basel net three minutes from time.

Once the result came through from Geneva - a 1-1 draw for Basel - the party, so long anticipated, could finally begin.

After doing the hardwork on Friday night with an away win over Lucerne, most of the St Gallen team were also on hand to thank the fans and celebrate the championship win. After being banned from even mentioning the championship all season by their manager, Marcel Koller, many of the players could hardly control their excitement.

The delight of the St Gallen fans is unlikely to fade in the immediate future. After the fuss over the domestic title has died down, the tantalising hope of qualifying for the European Champions League is now on the horizon. Just don't expect Marcel Koller to be boasting about what his team will do to the likes of Real Madrid and Manchester United!

swissinfo

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