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UEFA Champions League

  • 19 August 2014
  • • 19:45
  • • Atatürk Olimpiyat Stadı, İstanbul
  • Referee: M. Mažić
  • • Attendance: 41531
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Ladbrokes PaddyPower Bet365 WilliamHill Unibet Bwin Tipico
Beşiktaş 4.50 4.50 11.00 4.20 4.60 5.00 4.80
Draw 3.50 3.60 1.09 3.60 3.50 3.60 3.60
Arsenal 1.73 1.83 15.00 1.83 1.80 1.60 1.75
Besiktas - Arsenal Preview: Wenger keen to maintain momentum

Besiktas - Arsenal Preview: Wenger keen to maintain momentum

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After wins over Manchester City and Crystal Palace in the season's early stages, the manager hopes for more of the same while hinting at changes to his starting line-up

Arsenal will attempt to continue their perfect start to the season in the Champions League qualifying play-off against Besiktas.

Arsene Wenger's side, buoyed by a busy transfer window that included the eye-catching acquisition of Alexis Sanchez, impressed with a 3-0 Community Shield win over Manchester City and were then required to grind out a result when beginning their Premier League campaign with a last-ditch 2-1 victory over Crystal Palace on Saturday.

The aim now is to secure their progression to the group phase of Europe's premier competition with the minimum of fuss.

Wenger, however, knows that a tricky test awaits as Arsenal attempt to reach the competition proper for the 17th successive year, beginning with Tuesday's away leg at Ataturk Olympic Stadium.

"I believe it will be a very tough game and a very important one for us. We want to be in the Champions League group stage," the manager told reporters.

"Besiktas had a convincing result against Feyenoord [a 5-2 aggregate win in the last round] and so for us we have the luck to play the first game away.

"We know what is at stake, of course, and want to be highly focused for this game."

Arsenal have good memories of facing Turkish opposition at this phase, having beaten Fenerbahce 5-0 on aggregate last season.

Besiktas themselves are no doubt brimming with confidence as well, having cruised past Feyenoord to reach this stage. Goals from Mustafa Pektemek and Kerim Frei earned a 2-1 triumph in the opening leg of that contest before a Demba Ba hat-trick finished the job to complete a 5-2 aggregate success.

Besiktas are yet to begin their domestic season, with their opening match coming against Mersin Idmanyurdu at the end of August.

The Turkish club have never previously faced Arsenal and last reached the Champions League group stage in 2009-10.

Wenger could opt to make changes against Besiktas as he felt that striker Yaya Sanogo looked "jaded" against Palace, while Jack Wilshere suffered with sickness in the build-up to Saturday's game, although he was passed fit enough to start.

Arsenal's World Cup-winning trio of Per Mertesacker, Lukas Podolski and Mesut Ozil are not expected to play any significant part after they were allowed to return to training late following their exploits in Brazil and sat out the Palace game.

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Last Five Matches
Odds
Returns: Beşiktaş £110.00 Bet365 Sign up with bet365 for a 100% deposit bonus up to £200
Returns: Draw £36.00 PaddyPower Sign up to Paddy Power for £250 in free bets
Returns: Arsenal £150.00 Bet365 Sign up with bet365 for a 100% deposit bonus up to £200
Team News
Available Squads
29Tolga ZenginGoalkeeper
3İsmail KöybaşıDefender
19Pedro FrancoDefender
22Ersan Adem GülümDefender
31Ramon de Morais MottaDefender
8Veli KavlakMidfielder
10Olcay ŞahanMidfielder
15Oğuzhan ÖzyakupMidfielder
20Necip UysalMidfielder
9Demba BaStriker
11Mustafa PektemekStriker
1Cenk GönenGoalkeeper
27Serdar KurtuluşDefender
6Tomas SivokDefender
21Kerim FreiMidfielder
25Uğur BoralMidfielder
17Gökhan TöreMidfielder
-Cenk TosunStriker
1Wojciech SzczesnyGoalkeeper
28Calum ChambersDefender
6Laurent KoscielnyDefender
2Mathieu DebuchyDefender
17MonrealDefender
16Aaron RamseyMidfielder
8Mikel ArtetaMidfielder
19Santi CazorlaMidfielder
10Jack WilshereMidfielder
9Alexis SánchezStriker
12Olivier GiroudStriker
-Damián MartínezGoalkeeper
40Héctor BellerínDefender
48MiquelDefender
20Mathieu FlaminiMidfielder
7Tomas RosickyMidfielder
15Alex Oxlade-ChamberlainStriker
-J. CampbellStriker

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