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 By Mark Rodden

Anderlecht boss Besnik Hasi sorry for referencing Jean-Francois Gillet height

Anderlecht coach Besnik Hasi has apologised for referring to Mechelen goalkeeper Jean-Francois Gillet's height while criticising his players for missing three penalties during Sunday's 1-1 draw.

Anderlecht endured an astounding night as Dennis Praet, Stefano Okaka and substitute Youri Tielemans all had spot kicks saved by the visiting Gillet during the Belgian Jupiler League encounter.

They still led 1-0 when Tielemans missed their third penalty with a minute to go, before Mechelen snatched an unlikely point when Kara Mbodj scored an own goal in the fourth minute of stoppage time.

"With all the respect I have for him, the Mechelen keeper is only 4-foot-9 tall but we managed to hit three penalties along the ground," Hasi said after the game.

Although smaller than some goalkeepers, former Bari, Bologna and Torino player Gillet, 36, actually measures 5-foot-9.

He is also part of the Belgium squad after returning to his homeland this summer following 16 years in Italy.

"Yesterday I didn't intend to hurt Jean-Francois Gillet with my remarks about his height," Hasi told Anderlecht's official website on Monday.

"Quite the opposite. Jean-Francois put in a great performance and I have nothing but respect for him. He's an international too, whose value is recognised.

Besnik Hasi apologised for comments regarding Jean-Francois Gillet's height.

"In a moment of huge frustration after the match, I wanted to explain that my players should have hit their penalties differently. We spoke on the telephone this morning and I offered my apology to him."

Gillet said after the game that he had saved two penalties in one game before -- one of them from Andrea Pirlo -- during a Serie A clash between Bari and Brescia.

Currently third in the table, Anderlecht have a troubled recent history with penalties, missing 11 from 17 attempts in the 2012-13 season.

Steven Defour also had a penalty saved in their previous league game against Sint-Truiden, although his miss did not cost his side any points.

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