Club Bruges were counting on their top scorer Carlos Bacca (photo on top: in blue and black) but the Colombian striker hit the post early in the match. Bruges dominated play, but failed to create many opportunities.
Standard scored through Ezekiel and Belgian midfielder Yoni Buyens in the first half (photo) to take it 0-2, a major disappointment for Bruges. The home team had promised the fans fighting spirit before the match, releasing a video, but this didn't do the match any good as it had to be interrupted several times for foul play. Bruges didn't get the motor started, Standard even had the opportunity to create a bigger gap.
Anderlecht the winner of the day?
Earlier, Zulte Waregem were kept to a draw (1-1) by Sporting Lokeren. Zulte Waregem started as the favourites, but Lokeren, considered by many as the big surprise in the Play-off I competition, stood strong and even climbed ahead. Zulte Waregem needed a penalty to equalise. Anderlecht host KRC Genk on Sunday evening. Anderlecht can extend their lead over second-placed Waregem to four points if they win. Standard have leapfrogged Club Bruges to third place.
Play-off I is a round-robin competition with the top-6 teams of the past league competition who will be battling it out for the title and the European places. The numbers 1 and 2 will play in next year's Champions League, while the numbers 3 and 4 will go the Europa League. However, the number 4 will first have to win a play-off match against the winner of Play-off II to secure a place in Europe.
A good start for OH Leuven and AA Gent
In Play-off II, AA Gent and Oud-Heverlee Leuven took the best start in their respective groups. AA Gent beat RAEC Mons 2-1 in Group A, while OH Leuven downed Waasland-Beveren 3-1.
In Play-off III, Beerschot beat Cercle Bruges 1-0 in the fight against relegation. Cercle are now 6 points behind Beerschot and need a small miracle to avoid relegation.