1. A crazy weekend for some of the big boys
How did that happen? Of the eight clubs still in with a shout for the Playoffs, only three took maximum points: Club Brugge, Oostende and Standard. Genk could only draw at Lokeren while the rest all lost – including Gent and Anderlecht.Gent were thrashed at Oostende 5-2. Coming on the back of three defeats in three competitions, these are not happy days for Hein Vanhaezebrouck’s men. Anderlecht managed to find a banana skin, losing 1-0 at Beveren. Besnik Hasi was pretty scathing about the players he brought in, especially Youri Tielemans who only lasted an hour. However, after the dust settled, it could be seen that Club Brugge’s 6-0 defeat of Westerlo had only gained them a 1 ½ point advantage of their nearest rivals.
Standard came back after two defeats with Matthieu Dossevi, signed from Olympiakos last season, looking the business and getting a ‘chapeau’ from the watching Axel Witsel.
2. Four certainties but it will go the wire for the others.
There are three games to go before the JPL playoffs start. After Oostende’s win last Saturday, they’ve joined Club Brugge, Gent and Anderlecht as almost certain qualifiers.
As for the other two places, Standard have given themselves a slim chance of making the top six but it will be close. Of the four clubs involved – Racing Genk, Charleroi, Zulte Waregem and Standard Liege – Zulte Waregem have by far the easiest programme but they need to start winning. Racing Genk have points in the bag but they must play Club Brugge (h), Standard (a) and Oostende (h). One win should be enough but it ain’t easy. Standard go to Anderlecht next weekend for the ‘Clasico’ while Charleroi must play Oostende (a) and champions Gent at home.
3. The Playoffs – current situation and how it works.
The top six clubs qualify for the playoffs. The clubs then receive half of the points that they gained in the “classic” season. The current situation after 27 matches is:
Club Brugge 58 points, Gent 55, Anderlecht 51, Oostende 4, Racing Genk 42, Charleroi 38, Zulte Waregem 37, Standard 37.
4. Next weekend’s relevant matches are:
Gent – Lokeren
Leuven – Oostende
Sint Truiden – Zulte Waregem
Genk – Club Brugge
Anderlecht – Standard
Charleroi – Beveren