FC Zurich have beaten their lower-league opponents FC Lucerne 3-1 in the 80th Swiss Cup final at the St Jakob’s Park stadium in Basel.
Zurich's goals were scored by Marc Schneider, Alhassane Keita and Mihai Tararache. David Andreoli put away a late consolation effort for Lucerne.
Lucerne, who play in the Challenge League, started the match well but could only hold out for 39 minutes before the Super League favourites took the lead.
Picking up a short corner, Margairez pushed the ball across the face of the goal to Keita, who selflessly passed it to Schneider. The defender slotted the ball into the net via the right-hand upright.
The goal dented Lucerne’s spirit and self-belief and they never regained their initial energy and drive.
Keita’s goal in the 62nd minute - sliding onto a cross in the six-yard box - and Tararache’s strike 12 minutes later reflected Zurich’s second-half dominance.
Change of fortune
The win handed FC Zurich’s president Sven Hotz his second title (after Cup success in 2000) and rescued the team's season.
In recent weeks the lavishly paid Zurich team have seen their form go into freefall.
They only managed to pick up three points from their last seven league games, kissing goodbye to any hopes of finishing third in the Super League.
When it comes to the Swiss Cup, however, Zurich have an enviable record: out of eight appearances in the final, they have walked away with the cup seven times.
Some of Zurich’s fans tarnished their team’s win with their behaviour. Police and supporters faced off before, during and after the match.
Officials said that before the game Zurich fans threw bottles at buses carrying Lucerne’s supporters, who replied by throwing stones and bottles.
Police were deployed between the two groups of supporters during the match.
After the game, some Zurich supporters were stopped by security staff as they attempted to enter a section of the stadium occupied by Lucerne fans. Police in Basel said they arrested 12 people.
swissinfo with agencies
Zurich - Lucerne 3-1 (1-0)
Final of the Swiss Cup played in front of 32,500 spectators at the St Jakob’s Park stadium in Basel.
Goals: 39min. Schneider 1-0. 62min. Keita 2-0. 74min. Tararache 3-0. 87min. Andreoli 3-1.
Zurich: Taini; Nef (29min. Cesar), Filipescu, Stahel, Schneider; Tararache, Dzemaili (80min. Tarone); Gygax, Margairaz, Di Jorio (80min. Ilie); Alhassane Keita.
Lucerne: Zibung; C. Schwegler, Castillo, Mehmeti, Hodel; P. Schwegler (24min. Diethelm); Ratinho (58min. Alseny Keita), Andreoli, Thouga, Sucic (69min. Niederhäuser); Vogt.
Last year's Swiss Cup was won by FC Wil (3-2 against Grasshoppers Zurich). FC Basel lifted the cup two years ago (6-0 against Neuchâtel Xamax).
This year FC Zurich knocked out Young Boys Bern 3-1 in the semi-final, and in the previous rounds beat Bellinzona (2-0), Neuchâtel Xamax (2-0), Hérisau (7-2) and Kickers Lucerne (4-1).
FC Lucerne, on their path to the final, beat Aarau (2-1), Chiasso (4-0), Concordia (4-1), Winterthur (3-1) and Zug (2-0).
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