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Arsenal earns 17th straight CL spot

LONDON (AP) - Alexis Sanchez scored his first Arsenal goal, and the Gunners beat Besiktas 1-0 Wednesday night to reach the Champions League group stage for the 17th consecutive season.

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The Chilean forward, acquired last month from Barcelona for 35 million pounds (then $60 million), scored in first-half injury time to put Arsenal ahead following a 0-0 first leg last week in the home-and-home, total-goals series.

Arsenal finished a man short after defender Mathieu Debuchy was ejected in the 75th minute for his second yellow card, given for a foul om Mustafa Pektemek.

The Gunners have been in the group stage every season since 1998-99, and Athletic Bilbao is back for the first time since then after beating Napoli 3-1 to advance on 4-2 aggregate.

Malmo will be Sweden's first group stage representative in 14 years after beating Salzburg 3-0 to advance 4-2. Bayer Leverkusen routed Copenhagen 4-0 for a 7-2 win.

The draw is Thursday.

Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC and Associated Press.
Any commercial use or distribution without the express written
consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited.

  
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