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Hasi delight as Anderlecht ambitions continue

Besnik Hasi was thrilled with RSC Anderlecht after victory earned a UEFA Europa League slot while Cesare Prandelli said Galatasaray AŞ were enduring a "very difficult moment".

Aydın Yılmaz and Frank Acheampong compete on the floor
Aydın Yılmaz and Frank Acheampong compete on the floor ©AFP/Getty Images

Besnik Hasi "very happy" after Anderlecht secure UEFA Europa League spot
Chancel Mbemba scores in each half as Anderlecht take third place 
• Cesare Prandelli admits Galatasaray going through "very difficult moment"
Goalscorer Mbemba "proud" of hosts
Next games: Galatasaray v Arsenal, Dortmund v Anderlecht (9 December)

Besnik Hasi, Anderlecht coach
We are very happy to hit our target of achieving the Europa League and we will do our best in the competition. We know there is a big difference between us and the top clubs in Europe. We have five points, we could have got more, but at this level it is important to have some luck. It is not long that I have been coach at Anderlecht, so yes, I can say this is one of the most important victories for me.

I am delighted with our display today, we played well, we had many chances to score and we scored twice. In the second half the defence stepped back too deep and we had some problems, but Galatasaray did not have many chances and we controlled the game. We are a young team. With [Fabrice] N'Sakala and [Bram] Nuytinck we will have a stronger defence. I will be happy to have them back again in two weeks.

Cesare Prandelli, Galatasaray coach
We will continue on our way even though we are sad to leave European competition – but we are professionals and I will not give up. I take full responsibility for this defeat. It was a good Galatasaray tonight. It was a pity to concede the first Anderlecht goal on 44 minutes.

Burak Yılmaz reacts in Brussels
Burak Yılmaz reacts in Brussels©AFP/Getty Images

In the second half we tried to match Anderlecht and we could have equalised, but then we went down to ten men and everything became more complicated. Yes, there are tensions. It is normal that there is a bit of irritability. Players are human, they have feelings, they know we are going through a very difficult moment and they want to give more than what they currently can – because they care.

Chancel Mbemba, Anderlecht defender
It is very important [to secure third place] because it has been a long time since Anderlecht qualified for the Europa League – way too long. I am proud of my team, we gave 100%. We will try to keep working hard. I will not forget this game. I scored two goals. I have not scored in the league, but I have scored in the Champions League.

We did everything we could, we did not give up, and we got the three points. It is massive. We have another crucial game on Sunday in order to defend top spot [in the league]. We will do everything we can. We managed the game well during the first half, then [Steven] Defour went off and we were under pressure a lot. Then the coach made changes and we held strong until the end.

Dennis Praet, Anderlecht midfielder
The whole team are delighted. We played well and our first-half display was very good. We won 2-0 at home to Galatasaray, so it's a really good result. Galatasaray are a good team. I think this is one of the biggest games we've played, because it was really important to win. If we won, we were sure of playing European football after the winter break – and we did it.

I wasn't surprised [Mbemba scored twice]. He's always there for free-kicks and he scores a lot for a defender. We're very grateful to him and he played really well. We had a chance [of finishing in the top two] but maybe we weren't lucky enough to be second. But we're thrilled to come in third. You could see that we were one team, together, with a lot of young players. We showed that with young players you can do something in the Champions League.

Chancel Mbemba celebrates after scoring
Chancel Mbemba celebrates after scoring©AFP/Getty Images

Olivier Deschacht, Anderlecht defender
This is the highlight of my European career with Anderlecht. It was a special match for me – my 80th European game. I'm very proud and happy to have won. If we'd lost, there'd be nothing to celebrate, but I'm going to celebrate this.

Tomorrow we have to get back to work, though, because we have an important game on Sunday. In the second half we lost Steven [Defour], who's our leader in midfield, and started dropping back. We gave Galatasaray a few chances, but luckily they didn't take them and we took control again.

The support of the fans gives me a lot of confidence. They've always been straight with me. They say when things aren't going well, but they say when things are good too. They're the most honest supporters I've come across. We've grown in this competition. We've learned a lot, including things we mustn't do in future.

I'm very proud of everyone – not just the younger players. Silvio [Proto] was very important for us. This was a win for the whole team, for all the staff, and for our fans who were superb away against Arsenal.

Silvio Proto, Anderlecht goalkeeper
Tactically we played the game we needed to. We fought well and showed strength when we needed to. It's really pleasing. This is the first time we've finished third in the Champions League since I've been at Anderlecht. It's a good feeling.

We dropped too deep at the start of the second half and Galatasaray began to create chances. We had a dip, but I made the saves I needed to make. I'm happy to have got a clean sheet because they're not easy to come by in the Champions League.