Arsenal flew to Dubai for a late season training camp, including a friendly, with our non-internationals making up the numbers of the squad that are taking part.
It wasn’t just the sight of our club that we have enjoyed during this club football hiatus. We have been treated to the sight of three of our long-term injured returning to the training pitch.
Danny Welbeck, Rob Holding and Hector Bellerin have been pictured taking partin light training and joining their teammates in the gym, in an effort to strengthen themselves and push on in their recovery efforts.
Thanks to the delights of social media, we have been able to digest snippets of what is expected of a professional football player when they are on the treatment table and aiming to return to the team - or simply get back to kicking a ball.
All three of our walking wounded are prolific in terms of their social media activity and we have seen them all in the gym, undergoing therapy, and in Hector Bellerin’s case - even when they went under the knife.
The Spaniard has chronicled his entire recuperation from the horrific anterior mediate ligament injury that is set to keep him out for nigh-on an entire year.
So we can understand the demands placed on these men when they succumb to injury.
The latest photos show each of them in assorted training situations, and from previous players and their injury woes, we all know that a big step is the return to light training, which all three are doing now.
It is still however, a long way until they join up with the rest of the squad and the training regimes employed. So we will still be without these three for the foreseeable.
Our squad is doing well covering the gap left by the injured trio, but we know that we would be far stronger with them in the team, as evidenced by the strong start that they made in Emery’s first season.
Bellerin is probably the furthest away from recovery and taking to the pitch, but both Holding and Welbeck are still some months away from action.
Until then, we must be satisfied that social media and Arsenal are providing us with a window into how close they are to wearing the jersey again.