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AA Ghent wins 1st league title, beating Standard Liege in penultimate round of league playoff

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BRUSSELS — AA Ghent won its first league title on Thursday after it beat Standard Liege 2-0 in the penultimate round of league playoffs.

The victory gave Ghent an insurmountable five-point lead over FC Brugge with only Sunday's final round to come.

PHOTO: KAA Gent player Renato Neto, left, celebrates with teammates Brecht Dejaegere, center, and Benito Raman after he scored a penalty against Standard Liege during the Jupiler Pro League play-offs match at the Ghelamco Arena in Ghent, Belgium, on Thursday May 21, 2015. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)
KAA Gent player Renato Neto, left, celebrates with teammates Brecht Dejaegere, center, and Benito Raman after he scored a penalty against Standard Liege during the Jupiler Pro League play-offs match at the Ghelamco Arena in Ghent, Belgium, on Thursday May 21, 2015. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)

Sven Kums opened the scoring in the 18th minute before Renato Neto added a second from the penalty spot in the 50th.

The Belgian league has become a nail biter since it introduced a playoff competition at the end of the season when the top six team start anew with their points total divided by two. It makes for sudden changes in the standings and drama up to the last rounds of the competition.

Ghent has 49 points compared to 44 for Brugge while Anderlecht is a further point back.

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