A brace from Aaron Ramsey earned Arsenal a 2-0 win over Fenerbahce on Tuesday that confirmed their place in the Champions League group phase for the 16th consecutive season.
Leading 3-0 from last week’s first leg, in which Ramsey also scored, Arsene Wenger’s men finished the job in unfussy fashion at the Emirates Stadium thanks to a goal in each half from the in-form Welsh midfielder.
It was a third straight victory for Arsenal since the shock of their 3-1 loss to Aston Villa on the opening day of the Premier League season, but a hamstring injury to Lukas Podolski took some of the gloss off the evening.
Wenger said the German would be out for around three weeks, while Ramsey went off late on with a groin complaint and Jack Wilshere also came in for some heavy treatment on his troublesome ankle.
“Overall we scored five goals and didn’t concede. We’re in the group stage and that’s what we wanted,” said the Arsenal manager, whose side host north London rivals Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday.
“We played a heavy price on the injury front because we lost Podolski. I don’t know how bad Ramsey is. I don’t know how Wilshere responds to an ankle problem. He (Wilshere) looks all right. But Podolski is definitely out for 21 days and Ramsey we have to check how severe his groin is tomorrow (Wednesday).”
Ban on Fenerbahce
Meanwhile, Fenerbahce have been excluded from European competition for the next two years after losing an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) against a UEFA sanction for match fixing.
The Turkish side had been due to go into the Europa League but will now be excluded from that and also from all European competitions next year. — Agencies