Arsenal automatically qualify for the Champions League group stage after finishing third in the Premier League

Manchester United will have to play a qualifier

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The Independent Online

Arsenal have reached the group stage of the Champions League after finishing third in the Premier League this season.

Because Manchester United could only draw at relegated Hull, Arsenal only needed a draw of their own to finish third.

The contest was over within half an hour as Theo Walcott scored twice and then Jack Wilshere made it 3-0 - Walcott completed his hat-trick before half-time to put Arsenal in cruise.

However, because of Uefa changes to the seeding system, Arsenal are no longer a top seed and are likely to face a much tough proposition in the group stages.

Top seeds are now the champions of Europe's top eight leagues. Arsenal can't face Chelsea, a team from their own country, but could be drawn against Bayern Munich, Barcelona, Paris Saint-Germain or Juventus.

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