The third international break of the season is almost over and Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta remains on course to get exactly what he would have wanted.
With captain Martin Odegaard withdrawing from the Norway squad to allow him more time to recover from recent injuries, it has resulted in the Gunners being represented by 16 senior players, whether that be for Euro or World Cup qualifiers or important friendlies ahead of major tournaments taking place next year.
Whilst these two-week pauses in a campaign can disrupt momentum, Kai Havertz, Gabriel Martinelli and Leandro Trossard netted for Germany, Brazil and Belgium respectively, Bukayo Saka claimed an assist whilst on England duty and Jorginho has helped Italy qualify for next summer's European Championships.
Furthermore, throw in the fact that Trossard, Jorginho, Saka, Declan Rice, Aaron Ramsdale, David Raya, Karl Hein, Takehiro Tomiyasu, Oleksandr Zinchenko and Mohamed Elneny should have begun the process of returning to London Colney - if they haven't touched down in England already - and this international window perhaps could not have gone any better for Arteta.
Very soon the Spaniard's attentions, if they haven't already, will soon turn to the return of Premier League action and Saturday's London derby against Brentford. Having said that, the Arsenal manager finds himself in a position where he's just one more round of fixtures away from the dream international break being confirmed
Technically, William Saliba is one of three senior players left to play today (Tuesday) with France in action against Greece. As Les Bleus have already qualified for next summer's tournament, it could be that the Gunners' number two is handed a rare start by Didier Deschamps in central defence.
Meanwhile, all eyes will be on Havertz's starting position if he retains his place in the Germany line-up against Austria. The midfielder operated as a left-back in the 3-2 loss at the hands of Turkey at the weekend and his performance in an unfamiliar position was praised by Julian Nagelsmann.
"We played the same formation as in the USA," he said. "Kai didn’t play the classic left-back role and I have to be very surprised that he was criticised as a left-back. He won all of his duels and played well. If one criticises that he scored a goal, then [Alex] Grimaldo with six goals should no longer play as a left-back. Kai did very well."
Along with Jakub Kiwior, Saliba and Havertz are not the only players whom Arteta will be hoping for good news on. However, he will have to wait until the early hours of Wednesday morning to discover if Gabriel Jesus, Gabriel Martinelli and Gabriel Magalhaes are all OK as they could be in action for Brazil against Argentina.
Remaining international fixtures involving Arsenal players
Today (21/11) - Poland (Kiwior) v Latvia, Austria v Germany (Havertz) & Greece v France (Saliba)
22/11 - Brazil (Gabriel, Martinelli, Jesus) v Argentina
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