Ulisses FC have clinched their first ever Armenian league title with two rounds to spare after coming from behind to overcome FC Ararat with a 2-1 away win to end FC Pyunik's decade-long hegemony.
Though Ararat were lying bottom of the division before kick-off they made a good start to the match and stunned the league leaders when Karen Navoyan was brought down for a penalty, which was converted by Khoren Veranyan midway through the first half. The setback stirred the visitors into action, however, and they were level within four minutes when Mikheil Simonyan rose highest to head in a corner. On the stroke of half-time the hosts also conceded a penalty and David Grigoryan held his nerve to score from the spot.
Ulisses held on to their narrow lead to end Pyunik's ten-year title stranglehold and lift the league championship trophy for the very first time. Pyunik's reign had been the longest current run in any league in the world, and was only four years short of Skonto FC's European record in Latvia.
"I'm so happy for Ulisses and for the history of the club," said Ulisses coach Sevada Arzumanyan, whose team will now have their debut crack at the UEFA Champions League after two UEFA Europa League first qualifying round exits. "It's our greatest triumph after two successive third-place finishes. Five years of hard work have finally born fruit. I have to thank the players, who have finally brought joy to our fans. I also want to congratulate everyone who supported us.
This is a feeling of real happiness, and I don't know how to put it into words."
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