Brugge formally crowned Belgia...

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Brugge formally crowned Belgian champions after season ended early

Richie McCormack
Richie McCormack

07:33 15 May 2020


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Club Brugge have been crowned Jupiler Pro League champions after the season was ended prematurely due to COVID-19. 

In early April, Belgian club bosses voted to end the season early saying it wasn't "desirable" to end the season after June 30.

Earlier this month the Belgian government extended the ban on team sports in the country until July 31.

The Pro League General Assembly met via videoconference today to decide how best to end the season.

A majority of the 23 clubs with voting rights opted to decide the standings based on 29 rounds of games played, and distribute European places accordingly.

Therefore, Brugge have been declared champions and will go straight into the group phase of next season's Champions League.

It's Brugge's 16th championship.

Gent finish second and will go into the 3rd qualifying round of the Champions League.

A start date of August 7 has been set for the start of the 2020-21 season, and it's hoped this season's Belgian Cup final meeting of Brugge and Antwerp can be played before then.

If Antwerp win that they'll go into the Europe League group phase, however a Brugge win secures a group stage place for third placed Charleroi.

Standard Liege will take up the other Europa League qualifying spot.

Meanwhile, 84 per cent of clubs voted to keep a 16-team Division 1A of the Pro League next season.

That means bottom side Waasland-Beveren will be relegated, while Leuven and Beerschot still have to decide who'll replaced them.

Before football was suspended in the country, Beerschot held a 1-0 first leg lead over Leuven.

The Pro League say if the second leg of that playoff is not possible before the start of the season, then the side with the highest number of  points in Division 1B and having a valid license for professional football 1A - namely KVC Westerlo - will be promoted.

Meanwhile, if a game next season is called off by a local authority, then the away team will automatically get a 3-0 win unless the home team switches to a neutral ground on the scheduled date.


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