Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini admitted it has been a "crazy season" after his side pipped Manchester United to the Barclays Premier League title with a last-gasp 3-2 victory over QPR.
The Blues looked set to endure a awful afternoon when Djibril Cisse and Jamie Mackie overturned Pablo Zabaleta's first-half strike in between Joey Barton getting sent off.
But Edin Dzeko rose to give the Blues fresh hope before Sergio Aguero drove home the goal that turned City into champions for the first time since 1968.
Mancini told Sky Sports 1: It was incredible - they deserved this. To win it like this is incredible. I don't think I've ever seen a finale like this.
"We didn't deserve to lose, we had a lot of chances and we deserved to win the game and championship.
"It's fantastic for the club and the supporters after 44 years. It's been a crazy season and a crazy last minute."The Italian added: "Five minutes from the end, I didn't think we'd win this game. But we deserved to win this and deserved to win the title. We were on top for 20 games.
"I think for us it was really important to start winning this championship, Manchester City can have a big future now."
City captain Vincent Kompany admitted the dramatic ending was almost too much for him.
"You want to say it's the best moment of your life but, if I'm honest, please never again this way.
"Even though the first half was really good we just couldn't get through."
Kompany insists he never lost faith, though.
"I never stopped believing," he said. "When Edin scored that goal, it reminded me of so many other moments during the season when we've done this before. There was no reason not to believe.
"It's not sunk in yet. I don't know what happened at the end, it was just a huge mess.
"I'm so happy for the guys cos they've given so much this season. We've dreamed of this all our lives and now we're champions. See the fans and how happy they are - unbelievable."
Samir Nasri, a summer signing from Arsenal, was thrilled to taste league success in his first season at the Etihad.
"It's the first time in my life I've won something like this - to be losing 2-1, to come back and score the winning goal to give us the title," he said.
"It's amazing and I'm really happy. I knew I made the right decision (coming here) and tonight I want to celebrate with all our fans, my family and my friends."
Goalscorer Pablo Zabaleta added: "I thought when we were losing 2-1, I thought 'we'll score one goal and we're still going to lose'.
"I don't want to wake up from this. You just look at the players and the fans, everybody deserves this.
"The most important thing for any team is when you believe. If you believe in yourself you win. We believed until the last minute."
Goalkeeper Joe Hart hopes it is the first league title of many for City.
"I'm proud to play for Man City and I'm proud to play with these boys," he said.
"It means the world to these fans - we need to do it again now, let's do it again."
City's controversial striker Mario Balotelli, who came off the bench with the team 2-1 behind today, used the occasion to take a swipe at his critics.
He said: "We are the best and that's why we won.
"We didn't play very well in a few games but the rest of season we played very well so we deserved to win.
"Personally I think too many people talked and too many people said bad things about me, and now they have just to shut up."
And the Italian forward insisted his future is at the Etihad Stadium, saying: "Manchester City is a great club, a great team, I have great team-mates.
"I don't see my future far from here so I think I want to be here."
City legends Francis Lee and Mike Summerbee, who were part of the City side which won their last league title in 1968, were at the Etihad Stadium to witness the latest success.
"It was real Roy of the Rovers stuff," said Lee. "To come back with five minutes to go and score twice, it was unbelievable.
"As I said last week, if your name's on it, your name's on it. If your luck's going to go against you, it will do.
"They've got a very strong team and the will to go forward now, very good footballers, great backing, a top drawer manager. Let's hope they can carry it on."
Summerbee admitted he thought the club's title chances had disappeared as the final whistle approached.
"I thought we were out of it completely," he said.
"I can't handle a situation like this, going through things like this at my age.
"To be honest I'm a bit speechless, but this is brilliant and a fantastic occasion for the club."
QPR boss Mark Hughes demanded that the focus should be on his team's incredible efforts at City rather than Barton's red card
"I understand there will be a lot of comment about Joey's behaviour," said Hughes.
"I would rather concentrate on what we did.
"I haven't seen Joey and I haven't seen the incident but people were saying he had to go.
"It didn't cost us though."
In the end, QPR retained their Premier League status thanks to Bolton's failure to beat Stoke at the Britannia Stadium.
However, for most of the second half the Londoners seemed set to hand the title to Manchester United, having taken a 2-1 lead despite the loss of Barton.
"If we had pulled it off and won the game, it would have been the greatest Premier League performance in history given the significance of the game and the attention focused on it," said Hughes.
"I congratulate City. It is a huge achievement for them. I am sure there will be many more in the future. We touched the well of apprehension they experienced. It was all the more exciting because of that."
In the end though, Hughes accepted that the moment his side knew they were safe quite possibly turned out to be the moment upon which the entire season turned.
"The one criticism is that we understood we were safe just prior to their winning goal," he said.
"Maybe we just switched off.
"I have never been involved in anything like that but Roberto would have to admit he has been lucky today."
Hughes was magnanimous in his praise for Mancini, whose arrival in December 2009 following the Welshman's sacking provoked so much ire.
A number of players he signed were part of the City team and spoke to their former boss afterwards.
However, Hughes did not take any of the credit.
"It is nothing to do with me," he said.
"I was pleased for the players I worked with because I know the qualities that they have.
"They all came over and shook my hand but the credit is totally theirs.
"It was a great day for everyone, although I have to admit, I am a little bit flat because I am disappointed we got beaten."