"We have to be ambitious"

Peter Verbeke

RSC Anderlecht qualified for the group stages of the UEFA Europa Conference League on Thursday evening, gaining the upper hand after a penalty shootout against BSC Young Boys. On Friday afternoon, the draw took place in Istanbul. Our club was drawn against West Ham United FC (UK), Fotbal Club FCSB (the former Steaua Bucharest from Romania) and Silkeborg IF (Denmark). Coach Felice Mazzù and CEO Peter Verbeke reacted to the draw. 

CEO Peter Verbeke:

"Qualifying for this European group stage is an important moment for our club. We have succeeded in eliminating a strong opponent, thanks to the support of an atmospheric Lotto Park and the fantastic mentality of a young group of players.

With West Ham, we meet a team from the Premier League. The former Steaua Bucharest is a club with a rich history, while Silkeborg IF is sitting at the top of the Danish league. They are all great fixtures. We are looking forward to it and we have to be ambitious.”

Coach Felice Mazzù:

"I am quite satisfied, especially regarding the distances we have to travel for the away games. They are not the longest journeys by plane, so that is a good thing for recuperation and to avoid fatigue in a period that is very intense.

Once you get to the group stage, there are no 'easy' opponents. West Ham is a club with a great history and is an opponent with a lot of quality, even if they have not started the new season that well. Silkeborg IF is currently top of the league in Denmark together with FC Nordsjaelland. We have played FC Nordsjaelland in the preparation, so we know more or less what we can expect in terms of level. The team from Bucharest I know a little less well, they sit around 10th place in their league.

In any case, they are all solid teams. We will have to approach these games in a very focused way, but we must have the ambition to finish among the first two in our group."

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