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Five trends of the 2014-15 Premier League

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By ESPN Staff

Van Gaal's AZ Alkmaar land second Dutch title

AZ Alkmaar clinched their second Dutch championship after Ajax Amsterdam failed to beat PSV Eindhoven on Sunday.

AZ lifted the title for the first time since 1981 despite losing 2-1 at home to Vitesse Arnhem on Saturday.

They are 11 points clear of Twente Enschede with three matches and a maximum nine points left to play for and have secured a place in next season's Champions League group stage.

It is the sixth league title for coach Louis van Gaal after he steered Ajax To success in 1994, 1995 and 1996 and led Barcelona to Primera Liga glory in 1998 and 1999.

The Dutchman was also technical director when Ajax won the league in 2004.

AZ's triumph makes up for their near miss two years ago when they lost the title on the final day of the season.

They were top of the table on goal difference going into the last fixture but a 3-2 defeat at Excelsior Rotterdam allowed PSV Eindhoven to lift the trophy.

"This title doesn't take away the bad taste of 2007 because we should have won the double that year," Van Gaal told the Dutch weekly Voetbal International.

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