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banner Wednesday, 24 October, 2001, 20:42 GMT 21:42 UK
Last-gasp Arsenal go through
Arsenal striker Thierry Henry
Henry sends the Highbury crowd wild with third goal
Arsenal 3-1 Real Mallorca

An injury-time strike by Thierry Henry sent Arsenal through to the second phase of the Champions League as Arsene Wenger's side beat Real Mallorca at Highbury.

Two goals in three minutes by Dennis Bergkamp and Robert Pires seemed to have secured the outcome.

But Alvaro Novo pulled one back for the Spaniards to make for a tense finish.

Henry, however, had other plans as he grabbed the all-important third goal to send the home crowd wild with joy.

A minute's silence for Gunners legend Bertie Mee was impeccably observed before kick-off and it took some time for the subdued atmosphere to lift around Highbury.

Arsenal full back Lauren made the first telling pass of the game, picking out Bergkamp in the Mallorca area, but the Dutch striker could not connect with the ball.

It was left to the industry and persistence of Patrick Vieira to drive Arsenal forward.

  Key moments
61 mins: Pires strikes home Arsenal's opener
63 mins: Bergkamp heads in second
74 mins: Novo pulls one back for Mallorca
93 mins: Henry sends Highbury wild with third
And the Frenchman unleashed a powerful shot from the edge of the Mallorca area which Leo Franco did well to punch out.

Arsenal probed, but there was an edginess to the home side's first-half play that allowed the visitors to stick effectively to their game plan, which was one of frustration.

Henry perhaps should have made more of the two chances that came his way, but instead saw both go wide.

For their part, Mallorca's best efforts came from the halfway line, with Alejandro Campano and Alberto Luque trying to catch out Richard Wright la David Beckham.

Bergkamp, who thought he should have won a penalty after being felled by Angel Nadal, produced an exquisite chip to give Arsenal some much-needed heart just before half time.

Yet it was Mallorca who came out after the interval with greater purpose.

And, but for some woeful finishing by Campano, could have taken a surprise lead.

However, it was Pires and Bergkamp who settled Arsenal's nerves with two goals in a three-minute spell.

Freddie Ljungberg whipped in a telling cross which, having just missed Henry's head, fell kindly at Pires' feet and the winger duly dispatched the ball past Franco.

Arsenal's Robert Pires battles for the ball with Mallorca's Akyel Faith
Pires scored with aplomb

Bergkamp then doubled the home side's lead on 63 minutes when he rose to meet Giovanni van Bronckhurst's inch-perfect cross.

Sylvain Wiltord was brought on to replace Bergkamp, but within minutes of the substitution Highbury was stunned into silence when Novo pulled one back for the visitors.

In a bid to create the much-needed two-goal cushion Wenger then introduced Kanu and Ray Parlour.

But Arsenal were made to experience a couple of nervous moments in their own area as Mallorca went in search of the equaliser.

Kanu almost got Arsenal's third in the dying minutes or normal time but his shot went agonisingly wide.

Henry, however, ended the home crowd's suffering when his class finish put Arsenal through to the next phase of the Champions League.


Arsenal: Wright, Lauren, Keown, Campbell, van Bronckhorst, Ljungberg, Vieira, Grimandi, Pires, Bergkamp, Henry. Subs: Taylor, Wiltord, Parlour, Edu, Upson, Luzhny, Kanu.

Mallorca: Leo Franco, Akyel, Olaizola, Nadal, Miquel Soler, Campano, Marcos, Engonga, Novo, Luque, Paunovic. Subs: Miki, Carlos, Biagini, Diaz, Soler, Robles, Riera.

Referee: Dick Jol (Holland).

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
BBC football correspondent Mike Ingham
"Like Man Utd, Arsenal left it late"
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger
"We are so happy to be through"
Arsenal's Thierry Henry
"Thankfully for the team at the moment I am scoring"
Links to more Champions League stories are at the foot of the page.

 

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