Arsenal set Turkish test

2014-08-08 12:52
Arsenal (File)

Nyon - Arsenal face Turkish side Besiktas and reprieved Celtic meet Slovenian title-holders Maribor in the Champions League play-offs later this month.

There was drama minutes before Friday's draw in Nyon when Polish club Legia Warsaw, who had dished out a 6-1 third qualifying mauling to Celtic, were ruled out.

Legia were demoted to the Europa League play-offs for fielding an ineligible player.

Arsenal, meanwhile, must over overcome Besiktas to seal their 17th consecutive appearance in the Champions League group stages.

Last season the Gunners saw off another Turkish club, Fenerbahce, to go on to make it into the Last 16 where Arsene Wenger's side, finalists in 2006, came a cropper against Bayern Munich.

In other match-ups, Lille take on 2004 winners FC Porto, Napoli come up against Athletic Bilbao and Bayer Leverkusen play FC Copenhagen.

The first leg ties are scheduled for August 19/20, with the second leg matches on August 26/27.

The 10 winners will join the 22 teams automatically qualified for the group stage, which gets underway in September.

Draw for the European Champions League playoffs, staged in Nyon on Friday:

Champions Route

Maribor (SVN) v Celtic (SCO)

Salzburg (AUT) v Malmo (SWE)

Aalborg (DEN) v APOEL (CYP)

Steaua Bucharest (ROM) v Ludogorets (BUL)

Slovan Bratislava (SVK) v BATE (BLR)

League Route

Besiktas (TUR) v Arsenal (ENG)

Standard Liege (BEL) v Zenit St Petersburg (RUS)

FC Copenhagen (DEN) v Bayer Leverkusen (GER)

Lille (FRA) v FC Porto (POR)

Napoli (ITA) v Athletic Bilbao (ESP)


1st leg - August 19/20

2nd leg - August 26/27

Read more on:    arsenal  |  soccer

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