FC Basel 1893 won the Swiss Cup for a second consecutive season after earning a 4-1 win against plucky second-tier AC Bellinzona.
Basel had been installed as heavy favourites before the kick-off not just because they were facing a lower league side but as the cup final was also being held in their home stadium of St. Jakob-Park, where UEFA EURO 2008™ will kick off in a mere nine weeks time. It was Bellinzona, though, who had the better of the opening stages with Basel goalkeeper Franco Costanzo called into action several times. However, Eren Derdiyok scored the opening goal on 31 minutes to settle the Swiss league leaders.
Bellinzona equalised after 58 minutes through Christian Pouga but their euphoria was short-lived as they conceded three times in as many minutes to lose any chance of causing an upset. First Daniel Majstorovic headed in on 62 minutes, substitute Marco Streller made it 3-1, and fellow Swiss international Benjamin Huggel put the match beyond doubt to ensure at least UEFA Cup football for Basel next season.
"It was a hard fought victory," said Basel coach Christian Gross. "We needed all of Costanzo's class to stay in the game at the beginning and to enter half-time with a 1-0 lead. Bellinzona took everything out of us. Marco Streller did well and I am glad that he scored. Even though he is not fully fit yet, you could see that Basel is another team when he is playing." His Bellinzona counterpart Vladimir Petković said: "I am very pleased with my team. Basel's win is deserved, but not by that margin. We played a very good first half but in the end we paid for the effort we made then."
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