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Rediff News  All News  » Sports » Champions League: Xavi tips the scales for Barca, Arsenal through

Champions League: Xavi tips the scales for Barca, Arsenal through

November 24, 2011 09:08 IST

Xavi scored a typical Barcelona goal to give the European champions a 3-2 win over AC Milan in a Champions League match which was enthralling but of little importance on Wednesday.

Milan twice came from behind as Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who scored against his former club, and Kevin-Prince Boateng replied to a Mark van Bommel own goal and a twice-taken Lionel Messi penalty.

XaviBoth teams had already qualified for the last 16 with two matches to spare. Barcelona's win put them five points clear at the top and ensured they won Group H.

Boateng's stunning goal early in the second half was the pick of the five but Xavi's 63rd-minute goal decided the game.

In London, Arsenal reached the knockout rounds of the Champions League for the 12th successive season when a Robin van Persie double gave them a 2-1 win over Borussia Dortmund in a tense Group F match at the Emirates Stadium.

Van Persie scored for the 16th and 17th time in 18 appearances for Arsenal this season when he headed home after a superb run and cross from Alex Song after 49 minutes.

The Dutchman made it 2-0 when he swept in from close range in the closing stages. Shinji Kagawa got a consolation for Dortmund with the last kick of the game.

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