Pepi nets PSV winner to clinch knockout spot, knockout Sevilla

United States international Ricardo Pepi came off the bench to help PSV Eindhoven rally from two goals down against Sevilla and advance to the knockout stage of the Champions League for the first time since 2015-16.

Pepi entered the match in the 83rd minute and scored the winner in stoppage time to give PSV a 3-2 win over 10-man Sevilla on Wednesday, leaving the Dutch club in second place in Group B, one point behind Arsenal and three points in front of third-place Lens.

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"To be honest, when I saw that we scored the 2-2 goal, I talked to [teammate][ Patrick [van Aanholt] and I said, 'This is our moment,'" Pepi said. "We felt like it was an important goal that we scored and we knew the winner was coming."

The Dutch club secured qualification after Group B leader Arsenal routed third-place Lens 6-0 in London.

PSV have eight points, four behind Arsenal and three ahead of Lens, who lost the head-to-head tiebreaker with PSV.

Sevilla stayed with two points and were eliminated. They will fight for third-place -- and a Europa League spot -- when they visit Lens in the final round. It is the third straight season the Spanish club have failed to advance past the group stage.

"In the Champions League, the small details will make the difference," said veteran defender Sergio Ramos, who scored the 10,000th goal in Champions League history from group stage to final. "We were in control but going a man down turned out to be crucial."

Ricardo Pepi's goal put PSV Eindhoven on the verge of qualifying for the Champions League round of 16.
Photo Prestige/Soccrates/Getty Images

It was PSV's first away win in the Champions League since 2007. They have won consecutive games in the competition -- excluding the qualifying rounds -- for the first time since the 2006-07 season, when they won three in a row in the group stage on their way to the quarterfinals, when they were eliminated by Liverpool. PSV had beaten Lens in the previous round.

Sevilla opened the scoring in the 24th minute with Ramos getting his first goal since returning to Sevilla.

Youssef En-Nesyri added to the lead in the 47th but PSV rallied after Sevilla forward Lucas Ocampos was sent off with a second yellow card in the 66th.

Ismael Saibari pulled the visitors closer two minutes later with a neat left-footed flick from inside the area off a cross by U.S. defender Sergiño Dest, and PSV equalized with an own-goal by Nemanja Gudelj in the 81st before Pepi got the winner with a header from near the penalty spot two minutes into stoppage time.

Sevilla midfielder Fernando was sent off in the final minutes.

The hosts had a few chances to add to their lead in the first half, first when Djibril Sow had a goal disallowed by video review for a handball in the 39th, and then a minute later when En-Nesyri hit the crossbar with a dangerous header.

The 37-year-old Ramos scored the milestone 10,000th goal after a free kick taken by Ivan Rakitic. It was the veteran defender's first goal with Sevilla since he scored in a 2-2 draw against Real Madrid in 2005, before he joined the Spanish powerhouse.

"We have to keep our heads high," Ramos said. "But it's disappointing, because it's not always that you can be part of this competition. It was a tough loss for the club today."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.