Olivier Giroud scored his first hat-trick for Arsenal to ensure the Gunners qualified for the last 16 of the Champions League by beating Olympiakos.

Needing to win by two clear goals, the Gunners produced a performance of nerve and nous to finish second in Group F.

Giroud headed the opener in the first half, then stroked home the second after good work by Joel Campbell.

The French striker put Arsenal's qualification beyond doubt with his third from the penalty spot.

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Arsenal

Arsenal have never failed to reach the knockout stages of the Champions League since the start of the new format in 2003-04, and their experience on the biggest stage shone through on a memorable night in Athens.

They weathered the early enthusiasm from the physical home side, who were backed by typically partisan support, and slowly seized the initiative with a composed performance.

Mathieu Flamini had already hit the bar before Giroud opened the scoring with a near-post header from Aaron Ramsey's cross, which went in off the goalkeeper Roberto.

The second was the best goal of the night as Giroud won a flick-on on the halfway line and timed his run into the box to perfection before stroking home.

The third was slightly more fortuitous as Omar Elabdellaoui was penalised for handling Nacho Monreal's shot and Giroud stepped up to convert with ease.

Olivier Giroud (12) was struggling with a sore ankle - which he later appeared to recover from - when he won a header just inside the Olympiakos half and then raced into the box to score Arsenal's decisive second goal

Olivier Giroud (12) was struggling with a sore ankle - which he later appeared to recover from - when he won a header just inside the Olympiakos half and then raced into the box to score Arsenal's decisive second goal

Man of the match - Olivier Giroud

It's got to be Olivier Giroud for the way he applied the finishing touches to an accomplished team performance.

However, special mention must go to Joel Campbell who held off three defenders before taking out another two with a cute pass for Giroud's second goal.

Time and again, Campbell showed strength to hold off his marker and vision to slide in Giroud to offer hope to Arsenal fans that they have the makings of a fine strike partnership.

Gunners fans will also be cheered to see Theo Walcott starting the game, and while the England forward clearly lacked match fitness he made some clever runs and looked dangerous both out wide and when he drifted inside.

Joel Campbell was applauded by both sets of fans when he was substituted on his return to Olympiakos

Joel Campbell (right) was applauded by both sets of fans when he was substituted on his return to Olympiakos, where he won the Greek league during a loan spell in 2013-14

What next?

Arsenal did well just to qualify after chastening defeats by both Dinamo Zagreb (2-1 away) and Olympiakos (3-2 at home) meant they had failed to register a single point in the group after two matches.

They went on to be defeated 5-1 by group winners Bayern Munich in Germany too, after winning 2-0 against Pep Guardiola's team at home.

The fact they finished second to Bayern means they are likely to get a tougher last-16 draw than the German side.

Their potential opponents when the draw is made are Spain's Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid and Barcelona, Wolfsburg from Germany or Russian side Zenit St Petersburg.

They will join fellow Premier League sides Chelsea and Manchester City in Monday's last-16 draw at 11:00 GMT.

The stats you need to know

  • Olivier Giroud is the fourth player to score a hat-trick for Arsenal in the Champions League (after Thierry Henry, Nicklas Bendtner and Danny Welbeck).
  • Arsene Wenger's side won their first game in Greece since December 1998 (3-1 vs Panathinaikos).
  • Giroud became the seventh Arsenal player to reach double figures for goals in the Champions League (Henry, van Persie, Ljungberg, Fabregas, Walcott and Pires the others).
  • The result ended the Greek side's unbeaten run of six home Champions League games against English sides (W5 D1).
  • Indeed, Arsenal had lost all three of their previous visits to face Olympiakos in the Champions League, all of which were on matchday six.

Lineup, Bookings (4) & Substitutions (6)

Olympiakos

  • 16 Jimenez Gago
  • 14 Elabdellaoui Booked
  • 06 da Costa
  • 23 Siovas
  • 26 Masuaku
  • 11 Kasami (Dominguez - 72' )
  • 05 Milivojevic
  • 90 Pardo (Finnbogason - 86' )
  • 07 Fortounis Booked
  • 92 de Freita Couto Júnior (Santos Fortes - 77' )
  • 99 Ideye

Substitutes

  • 03 Botia
  • 09 Finnbogason
  • 10 Dominguez
  • 30 Salino
  • 37 Kapino
  • 77 Santos Fortes
  • 91 Cambiasso

Arsenal

  • 33 Cech
  • 24 Bellerín
  • 04 Mertesacker
  • 06 Koscielny
  • 18 Monreal
  • 20 Flamini
  • 16 Ramsey Booked
  • 14 Walcott (Gibbs - 72' )
  • 11 Özil
  • 28 Campbell (Oxlade-Chamberlain - 91' )
  • 12 Giroud Booked (Chambers - 92' )

Substitutes

  • 02 Debuchy
  • 03 Gibbs
  • 05 Gabriel
  • 13 Ospina
  • 15 Oxlade-Chamberlain
  • 21 Chambers
  • 45 Iwobi
Ref: Nicola Rizzoli
Att: 31,388

Match Stats

Possession

48 52

Shots

12 10

On target

4 5

Corners

7 6

Fouls

12 15

Live Text Commentary

Full time

Full Time Match ends, Olympiakos 0, Arsenal 3.

90:00 +4:04 Full time

Full Time Second Half ends, Olympiakos 0, Arsenal 3.

90:00 +2:21

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Manuel da Costa.

90:00 +2:18

Attempt blocked. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (Arsenal) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Mesut Özil.

90:00 +1:24 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Arsenal. Calum Chambers replaces Olivier Giroud.

90:00 +0:49 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Arsenal. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain replaces Joel Campbell.

90:00 +0:02

Joel Campbell (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

90:00 +0:02

Foul by Konstantinos Fortounis (Olympiakos).

88:40

Corner, Olympiakos. Conceded by Petr Cech.

86:48

Foul by Mathieu Flamini (Arsenal).

86:48

Konstantinos Fortounis (Olympiakos) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

86:05

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Manuel da Costa.

85:41 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Olympiakos. Alfred Finnbogason replaces Felipe Pardo.

83:19

Hand ball by Konstantinos Fortounis (Olympiakos).

82:02

Offside, Arsenal. Mathieu Flamini tries a through ball, but Mesut Özil is caught offside.

81:34

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Manuel da Costa.

81:21

Attempt saved. Mesut Özil (Arsenal) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

80:37

Mesut Özil (Arsenal) wins a free kick on the right wing.

80:37

Dangerous play by Dimitrios Siovas (Olympiakos).

78:25

Olivier Giroud (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

78:25

Foul by Manuel da Costa (Olympiakos).

76:16 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Olympiakos. Hernâni replaces Sebá.

75:02

Foul by Per Mertesacker (Arsenal).

75:02

Alejandro Domínguez (Olympiakos) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

74:28

Offside, Arsenal. Joel Campbell tries a through ball, but Olivier Giroud is caught offside.

72:29

Foul by Joel Campbell (Arsenal).

72:29

Sebá (Olympiakos) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

71:56 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Arsenal. Kieran Gibbs replaces Theo Walcott.

71:19

Attempt missed. Manuel da Costa (Olympiakos) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Felipe Pardo with a cross following a corner.

71:09 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Olympiakos. Alejandro Domínguez replaces Pajtim Kasami.

70:50

Corner, Olympiakos. Conceded by Nacho Monreal.

66:02 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Olympiakos 0, Arsenal 3. Olivier Giroud (Arsenal) converts the penalty with a left footed shot to the bottom left corner.

65:08 Booking

Booking Omar Elabdellaoui (Olympiakos) is shown the yellow card for hand ball.

65:03

Penalty conceded by Omar Elabdellaoui (Olympiakos) with a hand ball in the penalty area.

65:00

Attempt blocked. Nacho Monreal (Arsenal) left footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Olivier Giroud.

64:06

Attempt saved. Pajtim Kasami (Olympiakos) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Felipe Pardo with a headed pass.

63:11

Hand ball by Mathieu Flamini (Arsenal).

62:07 Booking

Booking Olivier Giroud (Arsenal) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

62:01

Foul by Olivier Giroud (Arsenal).

62:01

Felipe Pardo (Olympiakos) wins a free kick on the right wing.

59:15

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

58:10

Delay in match Laurent Koscielny (Arsenal) because of an injury.

58:10

Delay in match Luka Milivojevic (Olympiakos) because of an injury.

57:05

Corner, Olympiakos. Conceded by Petr Cech.

57:04

Attempt saved. Konstantinos Fortounis (Olympiakos) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top left corner. Assisted by Omar Elabdellaoui.

55:38

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Arthur Masuaku.

55:36

Attempt blocked. Theo Walcott (Arsenal) right footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Joel Campbell with a cross.

54:59

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Arthur Masuaku.

54:11

Laurent Koscielny (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

54:11

Foul by Felipe Pardo (Olympiakos).

52:29

Foul by Olivier Giroud (Arsenal).

52:29

Manuel da Costa (Olympiakos) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

51:43

Theo Walcott (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

51:43

Foul by Luka Milivojevic (Olympiakos).

50:59

Attempt saved. Dimitrios Siovas (Olympiakos) header from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Brown Ideye with a headed pass.

50:34

Corner, Olympiakos. Conceded by Nacho Monreal.

48:53 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Olympiakos 0, Arsenal 2. Olivier Giroud (Arsenal) left footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Joel Campbell with a through ball.

47:44

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

46:42

Delay in match Olivier Giroud (Arsenal) because of an injury.

45:38

Corner, Olympiakos. Conceded by Per Mertesacker.

45:00

Second Half begins Olympiakos 0, Arsenal 1.

45:00 +0:04 Half time

Half Time First Half ends, Olympiakos 0, Arsenal 1.

43:54

Attempt missed. Omar Elabdellaoui (Olympiakos) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right following a set piece situation.

43:09

Foul by Aaron Ramsey (Arsenal).

43:09

Arthur Masuaku (Olympiakos) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

40:43

Attempt saved. Arthur Masuaku (Olympiakos) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Konstantinos Fortounis with a headed pass.

39:47

Attempt missed. Arthur Masuaku (Olympiakos) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the left following a corner.

39:15

Corner, Olympiakos. Conceded by Laurent Koscielny.

38:19

Offside, Arsenal. Héctor Bellerín tries a through ball, but Joel Campbell is caught offside.

37:06

Attempt missed. Theo Walcott (Arsenal) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left.

36:39

Offside, Arsenal. Nacho Monreal tries a through ball, but Joel Campbell is caught offside.

35:40

Foul by Olivier Giroud (Arsenal).

35:40

Pajtim Kasami (Olympiakos) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

34:38

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Omar Elabdellaoui.

33:45

Laurent Koscielny (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

33:45

Foul by Luka Milivojevic (Olympiakos).

30:55

Attempt missed. Dimitrios Siovas (Olympiakos) header from the centre of the box is too high. Assisted by Felipe Pardo with a cross following a corner.

30:18

Corner, Olympiakos. Conceded by Nacho Monreal.

28:08 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Olympiakos 0, Arsenal 1. Olivier Giroud (Arsenal) header from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Aaron Ramsey with a cross.

27:03

Dangerous play by Nacho Monreal (Arsenal).

27:03

Pajtim Kasami (Olympiakos) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

25:48

Foul by Olivier Giroud (Arsenal).

25:48

Manuel da Costa (Olympiakos) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

24:18

Attempt saved. Olivier Giroud (Arsenal) header from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Nacho Monreal with a cross.

24:02

Attempt blocked. Mathieu Flamini (Arsenal) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Joel Campbell.

22:28

Foul by Olivier Giroud (Arsenal).

22:28

Luka Milivojevic (Olympiakos) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

21:19

Attempt missed. Pajtim Kasami (Olympiakos) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Arthur Masuaku.

19:39

Attempt missed. Sebá (Olympiakos) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses the top right corner.

19:36

Attempt blocked. Felipe Pardo (Olympiakos) left footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Luka Milivojevic.

18:44

Joel Campbell (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

18:44

Foul by Pajtim Kasami (Olympiakos).

18:12

Foul by Mathieu Flamini (Arsenal).

18:12

Arthur Masuaku (Olympiakos) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

17:29 Booking

Booking Aaron Ramsey (Arsenal) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

17:28

Foul by Aaron Ramsey (Arsenal).

17:28

Konstantinos Fortounis (Olympiakos) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

15:16

Mesut Özil (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

15:16

Foul by Manuel da Costa (Olympiakos).

11:24

Joel Campbell (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

11:24

Foul by Luka Milivojevic (Olympiakos).

9:08

Foul by Mathieu Flamini (Arsenal).

9:08

Pajtim Kasami (Olympiakos) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

8:41 Booking

Booking Konstantinos Fortounis (Olympiakos) is shown the yellow card.

8:37

Konstantinos Fortounis (Olympiakos) has gone down, but that's a dive.

8:29

Attempt blocked. Felipe Pardo (Olympiakos) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Konstantinos Fortounis.

7:32

Foul by Héctor Bellerín (Arsenal).

7:32

Sebá (Olympiakos) wins a free kick on the left wing.

1:14

Offside, Olympiakos. Brown Ideye tries a through ball, but Felipe Pardo is caught offside.

0:00

First Half begins.

0:00

Lineups are announced and players are warming up.

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