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Real Madrid celebrates Spanish league title with fans after reaching Champions League final

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MADRID (AP) — Real Madrid celebrated its Spanish league title with fans on Sunday, meeting with government officials and parading through the streets of the capital.

Madrid clinched its 36th league title last weekend, with four rounds to spare, but it couldn’t celebrate the triumph right away because it still had to play the second leg of the semifinals of the Champions League.

Madrid rallied with two late goals by striker Joselu to defeat Bayern Munich 2-1 on Wednesday at the Santiago Bernabeu Stadium, advancing 3-2 on aggregate to the final against Borussia Dortmund on June 1 in London.

“I’m sure that in three weeks we will be back here,” Madrid midfielder Toni Kroos said while addressing the crowd on Sunday.

Several thousand fans greeted the squad as it paraded through the city and headed to the club’s traditional celebration spot at Cibeles square.

The league trophy was handed to the team during a ceremony at the club’s training center.

Madrid usually also celebrates its titles with fans at the Bernabeu, but the stadium was being used for a concert on Sunday.

Madrid won 4-0 at relegated Granada on Saturday, with Granada players keeping the guard of honor tradition of lining up to applaud the champions as they entered the field before kickoff.

Most players and club president Florentino Pérez spoke to the crowd, which chanted some of the team’s traditional fighting songs.

“This team overcame a situation that looked irreversible,” Pérez said, referring to the series of injuries that affected players early in the season, including serious knee ligament tears by Thibaut Courtois, Éder Militão and David Alaba.

Captain Nacho Fernández led a round of applause to the three injured players.

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AP soccer: https://apnews.com/hub/soccer

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