It came, it went, without a major incoming and now we know what we have for the next – roughly – three months until the transfer window re-opens on 1st January. I say ‘roughly because we’ve got the whole of September, the whole of October, then the first 12 days of November and then the season stops for this dodgy World Cup in November/December. Our games resume on Boxing Day and then we carry on.

It means there are 20 football matches to play for this squad in all competitions, by my totting up. That’s roughly a game every three to four days and it means Arteta will need to make sure his team stays fighting fit for the foreseeable, before Arsenal can assess their options again. We now have a first team squad of 23 players who will need to get game time. That means that all of them should get minutes and it means that the likes of Marquinhos – who many have said probably isn’t ready for the step up – will surely now be given an opportunity. I also wonder if the likes of Nelson might also find himself some minutes in the League Cup or maybe off the bench from a Europa League and whilst his career may not have much of a look in at Arsenal, if he picks up some minutes between now and the January window then maybe he can show us a little something different in games like those in the Europa League.

Am I happy that we didn’t get that little bit of extra cover in? Not really. With five subs in the league from now on, minutes can be given to a host of players, but perhaps more extensive of that new rule will also enable Arteta to get more rest in to players legs as well? If a player is looking like he’s struggling a bit for fitness or has even the slightest of knocks, five subs allows you to avoid risking that player any more and perhaps you can get him off, get it iced and get him ready for the next game rather than exacerbate any injury further.

Of course that is all well and good, but when a player picks up a knock and is then out for a prolonged period of time, then the lack of cover becomes really problematic. Just look at where we are now; we haven’t had any team news so I realise this is speculation, but we have Partey out, Elneny out for an “extended period of time”, we have Zinchenko out and we have Odegaard who limped off on Wednesday night. If all of those players remain out, it means we have four out, 19 players from the first team available, when you can have a match day squad of 20. It means we’ll be dipping in to the youth set up and despite what felt like a good summer and what has been a fantastic start, I think there are a few of us Gooners looking at that and wondering if we’re going to find ourselves in a similar situation than the one we had towards the end of last season. When we lost to Newcastle last season one of the challenges we had was that we had to patch up players and send them out, then we filled the bench with youth teamers like Patino, Swanson and M’Hand. We also saw Hutchinson make the bench a couple of times and it was clear that we were far too short. We’ve got four injuries already this early in the season and already we’re looking at potentially having to give a spot on the bench to a kid who the manager will have no intention of playing. And the thing is, a lot of the players left who haven’t gone on loan, are those that were even further from the first team than those that impressed last season. I’ve just done a little lazy Googling and tried to find out if the loan window remains open after that, but can’t find anything else, but if that stays open then you’d expect Matt Smith to go out on loan, although I think I saw him on the bench on Wednesday night so perhaps he’ll be kept at the club to be that extra man. But having never featured for the first team before he’s hardly a guy that you’d think Arsenal would rely on. So we are quite short if injuries and suspensions try to kick in.

And I think this wasn’t part of Arteta’s plan. He has said publicly many times that we are short and on Wednesday he said that Elneny’s injury forces the club to do something. They tried I think and we all know they made three bids for Villa’s Douglas Luiz, but Villa wouldn’t budge and they keep him for this season. We offered £25million for a player with one year left on his deal and Villa turned us down. That is, of course their prerogative, but I do find it a bit weird myself. And I can say this as an Arsenal fan with experience; we didn’t offload Alexis at the right time and it ended up being a terrible swap deal for Mkhitaryan. We also should have sold Ramsey in the summer before his contract expired for decent cash – there were buyers – but we held on and he walked on a free the following summer. That really narked me and I know a lot of other Arsenal fans too, so I suspect Villa fans might feel that pain as well when they get to next summer.

It’s the same with Leicester and Tielemans. They will most likely now lose him for a free, unless they accept a cut down fee for the player in January, mainly because by the sounds of it they wanted £40million. So now it’ll be basically nothing. I just find it odd – with the benefit of Arsenal’s own experience, of course.

From an Arsenal perspective of course it is frustrating, but at least we aren’t over paying for players, which isn’t something we should be doing given how terrible we have proven to be at selling. I’ve said too much already, but Hector Bellerin going to Barcelona on a free transfer is shocking every way you look at it. That reprehensible club gets more hideous by the day and I hope they have a shocker of a season, after they shafted us on Auba and have now shafted us with Bellerin. People were telling me “he only wanted Betis” but his move to Barca proves that wasn’t the case. Barca have spent £137million this summer. They have spent more money than Arsenal. Yet they have got themselves a player who was under contract from us. And they’ve signed him on a one year deal so they will probably just cast him off next summer anyway. Or, knowing them, they’ll sell him for a few million in January. Bellerin was a great servant for us, of course I hope his career goes well, but his refusal to go to only a couple of clubs has essentially meant Arsenal have been done out of a fee and that is a mini black mark on the man, for me.

I think I’ll leave it there for now. I know some of today’s blog has seemed a bit negative, but trust me when I tell you, overall I’m happy with where Arsenal are at. We’ve won five out of five, the team is playing really well, I am glad with our incomings we’ve made and on transfer fees we pay, we aren’t being mugged off. But the trepidation based on injuries is still nagging a little bit. Maybe Arteta does a presser today and we have some good news. I hope so.

Catch you all tomorrow.