"I just hit the ball as hard as I could and tried to keep it on target," said Málaga CF winger Eliseu after his spectacular opener left RSC Anderlecht ruing the calibre of the Spanish side.
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Two sensational goals from Eliseu helped competition debutants Málaga CF make another searing impression as they strolled to a 3-0 success at RSC Anderlecht, and afterwards the Portuguese winger tried to explain his secret. "I just hit the ball as hard as I could and tried to keep it on target," he said of his emphatic opener on the stroke of half-time, which for Anderlecht left-back Olivier Deschacht summed up the calibre of opposition his team must face at this level.
Eliseu, Málaga midfielder
The first goal I scored was really important because it happened at a key moment in the game, right at the end of the first half. I just hit the ball as hard as I could and tried to keep it on target – and it went in. For the second goal, I noticed that the goalkeeper was quite a long way from his goal and I tried to place it in the corner. It went in there and turned out perfectly.
Being in the Champions League for Málaga – not just the team but the city as well – is something to be really proud about. After all, it's the first time it's happened. It's something that the people who came all the way from Malaga [to watch] can be proud of and it obviously made them happy. Now we're going to do everything we can to win our next game against Milan – if we do that, it would be a really important step towards qualifying for the next stage of the Champions League.
Martín Demichelis, Málaga defender
I don't know if the 3-0 scoreline was really a surprise when you look at how the match unfolded. We deserved our victory and created a lot of chances. In fact the goal came a bit late because we'd already created quite a few chances by then.
We already knew the Milan result in Russia against Zenit, so it was important to do well tonight and get the three points. It's really a bit too early to talk about our match against AC Milan [on 24 October]; what we have to do is carry out a full analysis of this game and take some time to rest as well.
Eliseu's first goal was really important because it opened the scoring. Having said that, the attacking play that led to his second was really good – and his finish was perfect.
Sacha Kljestan, Anderlecht midfielder
Málaga were better and we didn't deal with their movement off the ball. When you see the style of Málaga and the talent they have, they're a top team and could do some damage in the Champions League. We had to be aware of that. We weren't good enough today and obviously didn't get any goals. Not a lot of people know a lot about them. They're a relatively new club that's been doing well recently, but you saw tonight that they have a good team.
It really was a killer blow [to concede] at the end of the [first] half. Silvio Proto made a lot of saves early in the half that kept us in the game and also energised the crowd and the team, and we were just deflated when we had to come into the locker room down 1-0. We tried to adjust but didn't do well enough in the second half either.
[At half-time] the coach told us to keep the ball and keep it moving, and try to control the game more in the middle because we lost too many balls in the midfield in the first half. I tried to do that but we couldn't create enough offensively. We need to be better in front of goal. We've had half-chances, but sometimes other teams get half-chances and put them away.
It's going to be difficult [away against FC Zenit St Petersburg]. We have one point and they have zero, so the bottom two are going to battle it out for two games in a row, home and away. Hopefully we'll take four points.
Olivier Deschacht, Anderlecht defender
Today we played against a better team [than AC Milan] and we didn't play as well as in that game, so that explains the result. I don't know why we played badly. We always want to be the best but sometimes it happens that you play a bad game, and unfortunately it was today. We remain optimistic, though. We've only lost one other game this season, so we have a positive rhythm.
Maybe it would have been a different story if it was 0-0 at half-time. You never know, but that goal killed us and the second was unfortunate. After that the game was finished. We have to keep on working and believe in ourselves. It won't be easy at Zenit but no game is easy in the Champions League. When you see the first goal – that's the Champions League.