WRAPUP 1-Soccer-Arsenal survive torrid examination

Reuters

Wed, 24 Aug 21:57:00 2011

Arsenal teetered on the brink on of elimination before coming from behind to win 2-1 at Udinese and make sure of their place in the Champions League for the 14th season in a row on Wednesday.

Twice former European champions Benfica joined them with a 3-1 win over Twente Enschede and Olympique Lyon made it 12 appearances in succession by holding out for a 1-1 draw at Rubin Kazan in the playoff second legs.

Czech champions Viktoria Plzen qualified for the first time with a 2-1 win over FC Copenhagen and BATE Borisov completed the lineup with a 2-0 win at Sturm Graz.

Udinese, 1-0 behind from the first leg, went ahead with an Antonio di Natale goal six minutes before halftime. Robin van Persie levelled 10 minutes after the break.

The turning point came shortly afterwards when a Di Natale penalty was saved by Wojciech Szczesny before Theo Walcott scored the decisive goal in the 69th minute.

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