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FOOTBALL

Grasshopper clinches Swiss Cup football title

In a surprise result, Zurich-based football club Grasshopper beat defending champions FC Basel on penalty kicks on Monday to gain the 19th Swiss Cup victory in its history.

Grasshopper clinches Swiss Cup football title
Grasshoppers celebrate winning the cup for 19th time. Photo: Grasshopper Club Zürich

The two sides battled to a 1-1 tie in regular time and overtime at the Stade de Suisse in Bern. 

Basel opened the scoring in the 71st minute when Markus Steinhöfer put the team ahead.

Izet Hajrovic answered back for Grasshopper just four minutes later.

After 120 minutes of play, the game was decided in dramatic fashion on penalty kicks, with Grasshopper scoring four goals to Basel’s three.

In recent history, Basel has dominated the Swiss Cup, winning six times in the last 12 years.

And it looked to be Basel’s year again after the team beats Spurs in the Europa Cup before being knocked out by Chelsea in the semifinals earlier this month.

But Grasshopper prevailed on Monday, extending the Zurich team’s record for the most Swiss Cup wins in history.

The club won the first two titles back in 1926 and 1927, when the competition first started.

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FOOTBALL

‘Overwhelmed’: Unaware Swiss super fan stunned about viral fame

A Swiss super fan who has shot to fame after images of him watching Switzerland’s win over France went viral told the media he was unaware of his viral fame - but that he was overwhelmed with the world’s attention.

‘Overwhelmed’: Unaware Swiss super fan stunned about viral fame
Image: Twitter.

Like most Swiss football fans, Luca Loutenbach’s Monday evening – highlighted by a surprise upset win over the current World Champions and tournament favourite France – went about as well as you could have expected. 

But while his side were putting on the pressure through late goals to push the game into extra time, Loutenbach’s image was being shared across the world. 

Two pictures of Loutenbach, juxtaposed from before and after Switzerland scored an equaliser in the 90th minute to send the game to extra time, were widely shared. 

The images were even shared by Sadiq Kahn, the mayor of London, who congratulated Switzerland and said the images summed up the beauty of football. 

On Tuesday, Loutenbach spoke with Swiss tabloid Blick to tell the story. He said he had no idea about the images as his phone had no reception in Romania – and only found out after the game. 

“I didn’t have a network during the game. But some fans around me were connected to the internet and quickly realized what was happening. What an incredible buzz!” said the man from the canton of Jura. 

While Switzerland have made it further than they have in their history in the tournament, Loutenbach is far from a bandwagon fan. He told Blick he’s seen around 50 national team games before. 

“It’s the most beautiful day in the history of Swiss football, let’s not be afraid of saying it. It is the accomplishment of the immense work of the ASF (Federation), of (coach) Petkovic and of the whole team” he said. 

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