Arsenal, Chelsea Through to Europa Last 32

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  • Arsenal's Granit Xhaka, left, scores his side second goal during the English League Cup semifinal second leg soccer match between Chelsea and Arsenal at the Emirates stadium in London, Wednesday, Jan.24, 2018. Two fortuitous goals helped Arsenal beat Chelsea 2-1 on Wednesday and seal a League Cup final meeting with Manchester City, providing a glimmer of joy in a gloomy domestic campaign. Reuters/John Sibley

    Arsenal's Granit Xhaka, left, scores his side second goal during the English League Cup semifinal second leg soccer match between Chelsea and Arsenal at the Emirates stadium in London, Wednesday, Jan.24, 2018. Two fortuitous goals helped Arsenal beat Chelsea 2-1 on Wednesday and seal a League Cup final meeting with Manchester City, providing a glimmer of joy in a gloomy domestic campaign. Reuters/John Sibley

    TEMPO.CO, London - Arsenal and Chelsea were among seven teams to reach the Europa League knockout stage on Thursday, Nov. 8, while last year`s runners-up Olympique de Marseille were eliminated at the group phase.


    The two Premier League teams were joined by Eintracht Frankfurt, Lazio, Bayer Leverkusen, FC Zurich and Dinamo Zagreb in the last 32 with two games still to play before the draw for the next round in Nyon, Switzerland on Dec. 17.

    Arsenal qualified with a 0-0 draw against Sporting at The Emirates, although striker Danny Welbeck was carried off on a stretcher in the first half with a serious ankle injury, while Chelsea won 1-0 at BATE Borisov in one of the early kickoffs.

    A heavily changed Arsenal side were unable to break down a dogged Sporting team, who were reduced to 10 men in the 88th minute when defender Jeremy Mathieu fouled striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang as he raced towards the area.

    However, the point was enough to guarantee the north London side a place in the last 32 atop Group E on 10 points, with Sporting behind them on seven. Vorskla Poltava lost 1-0 to FK Qarabag, with both teams on three points.

    Arsenal forward Welbeck was taken off on a stretcher and given oxygen in the 25th minute after landing awkwardly when jumping for a header only hours after being named in the England squad for their next internationals.

    Earlier, Chelsea's France striker Giroud got his first goal this season in the second half to secure a win at BATE, meaning Maurizio Sarri's side have qualified from Group L.

    "I think the first target in this competition was to qualify and now the second target is to win our group so I think we need one more point," the Italian coach said.

    "It's very important because then we can talk again about this competition in February, when we will have another target."

    Chelsea have yet to lose under Sarri so far this season.

    REUTERS