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The Belgian First Division A Football League is one of the more complicated in the world with play-offs needed to rank the title winners, and another one to decide on the relegated club and final Europa League representative.
This is a tricky league for punters to wrap their heads around as the play-offs towards the latter stages of a 30-game campaign can get tricky for football watchers not familiar to the set-up.
The top division is also known as the Jupiler League as of two years ago and the best performing sides over history have been Anderlecht, Club Brugge, Standard Liege, Genk and Gent.
Anderlecht is the leading side with regard to title championships, with a record 34 trophies to the club’s name. They follow this up with 21 runner-up spots over the years.
This is more than double the titles than the country’s second highest winningest team, FC Brugge (15 titles), and Standard Liege (10).
Based on a calculation of historical rankings and contemporary ratings systems the football prediction sites will portray an accurate picture of potential league winners or individual match-up victors.
The current champions of Belgium are Club Brugge, who finished last season’s title play-off on top of the standings, while Standard Liege finished second and Anderlecht third.
Before sports bettors can get an idea of placing wagers on the Belgian Jupiler League a fresh understanding of how the system works is in order, as the pressures of pushing for a top six play-off position, or jostling to win the 2nd promotion league are demanding in different rights.
Punters must note that the leading soccer prediction sites take all these factors into consideration before making their forecasts.
The Belgian A League is contested by 16 teams over a 30 match season – with the teams that finish in the top six moving into a late season play-of mini-league (to see who is crowned first, second etc.).
The teams that finish in positions 7-15 compete in the 2nd play-off.
The team that finishes in last place in the regular season is automatically relegated.
The points earned during the 30-game regular season are carried over to the respective play-offs, with the total automatically halved. If there is a fraction of a point it is rounded off to the nearest integer.
In the 1st play-off the six teams play each other twice in a league format (3 points win, 1 draw), with the side that finishes with the most points crowned champions. The European spot is then claimed by the team finishing in second place.
The 2nd playoff- also known as the Europea League play-off – is a similar format, with the winner of this mini league going on to represent Belgium in the Europa Cup.
Football prediction sites will cover the regular season, then calculate the odds and bets for the play-off sections as and when the results come in around the country week-to-week.
Anderlecht are well-known across the world and have represented the country ably in the various European competitions over the years, winning five European titles in that span. The most notable successes came in the late 70’s, with the side picking up the then Euro Cup Winners Cup in 76 and 78, and the UEFA Super Cup in the same respective years.
They are also two time semi-finalists in the UEFA Champions League.
Brugge and Liege have never tasted European success but have each been involved in two final, with FC Brugge famously making it all the way to the UEFA Champions Cup final in 1978.
Belgian football was once a powerful European force but due to the vast revenues which dictate the playing squads across the continent, it struggles to keep apace. That said, the Belgium national football team is one of the best in the world at present.