Club Brugge in the doldrums; Anderlecht create 6-point gap

In football, Anderlecht made no mistakes in their race to the league title. Their match at KV Oostende, on the third day of Play-off I, was seen as a difficult one, but Anderlecht were helped by an impressive solo by playmaker Sofiane Hanni to take it 0-1, whereas title rivals Club Brugge were kept at a 2-all draw at Zulte Waregem. AA Gent are playing at Charleroi this evening.
Captain Hanni (right) with Leander Dendoncker and tall Polish striker Lucasz Teodorczyk.

Anderlecht had played in Europe on Thursday, receiving Manchester United (1-1) and Ostend smelled their chance: they played at home and Anderlecht could be tired.

However, Anderlecht kept a strong organisation and had the best chances, with defender Kara Mbodj hitting the bar. An impressive solo effort by Algerian playmaker Hanni (who left KV Mechelen for Anderlecht last summer after being chosen the best player in the Belgian League) made it 0-1 for Anderlecht after the break, a result that the Brussels visitors kept without major problems.

KV Oostende had the best chances just before the break, including a missed penalty.

Brugge come back from 2-0 behind, but needed a win

On a chilly but sunny Sunday afternoon in Waregem, hosts Zulte Waregem kept neighbours Club Brugge at a 2-all draw in the West Flemish derby. Zulte took a 2-0 lead, but Bruges held on to their last title hopes by managing a draw.

Cup winners Zulte dominated the game in the first half hour with Senegal striker Mbaye Leye as the strong man (photo below: Leye converted a penalty). Club Brugge recuperated their star player José Izquierdo, the Golden Shoe winner of 2016, but he was not yet in his best form. One goal before and one after the break, by their tall Brazilian striker Wesley, was enough for Brugge to take a draw home.

Club Brugge are now 6 points behind leaders Anderlecht after 3 of 10 days of play in Play-off I. AA Gent are a further 3 points adrift, but can come alongside Club Brugge if they beat Charleroi.