Mikel Arteta may have to start looking at other options at left-back following an injury scare for summer signing Jurrien Timber on his Premier League debut

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta is facing an anxious wait over the extent of Jurrien Timber’s injury.

After joining from Ajax in a £34.2million deal earlier in the summer transfer window, the Netherlands international was handed his Premier League debut for the Gunners against Nottingham Forest, starting at left-back in the continued absence of Oleksandr Zinchenko.

But unfortunately for the 22-year-old, his Saturday afternoon came to an end earlier than he would have liked. On the stroke of half-time at the Emirates Stadium he went down after a collision with Brennan Johnson and required lengthy treatment before emerging for the second half.

However, Timber would only last a couple of minutes before collapsing again under no contact and after limping off the pitch to receive further treatment on his knee he was replaced by Takehiro Tomiyasu with Arteta revealing the next steps for the Arsenal summer signing.

“The doctors looked at him and they were happy for him to continue, he was as well,” the Spaniard said in his post-match press conference when defending his decision to send Timber back out. “Straight away in the first action of the second half he made a movement and it was a bit funny. We took him out straight after and now we have to assess him and see what he has.”

The versatile defender has been active on social media since the injury scare, but until details of the assessment are revealed, all connected to the north London outfit will be hopeful that he isn’t forced to spend a lengthy period on the sidelines in what would be the best case scenario.

Having said that, if it’s not good news and Timber is indeed ruled out of next Monday’s London derby against Crystal Palace and more fixtures that follow – including the visit of Manchester United at the beginning of next month – then Arteta will have to start looking at other options at left-back.

Of course, it’s very easy to suggest dipping into the transfer market as the window closes in just under three weeks’ time. Although, in truth, the solutions are staring the Spanish tactician right in the face as it’s a position where depth isn’t exactly an issue for Arsenal following some shrewd signings in the past two years.

The Gunners boss could turn to Tomiyasu who replaced Timber against Forest or hand a recall to Zinchenko despite the fact that the Ukraine international missed the entire pre-season and aside from a 11-minute cameo in the Game 4 Ukraine charity match last weekend, he’s not played since May.

Jakub Kiwior is also an option as he finished last season operating at left-back and was given that role on occasion during pre-season. Then there’s Kieran Tierney, who has slipped down the pecking order of late and wasn’t even included in the matchday squad against Forest.

Still, amid talk of a departure, before the summer transfer window closes, the Scotland international proved in pre-season – particularly against Manchester United and Barcelona – that he is more than capable of stepping in. All things considered, the Gunners are in good hands if Timber’s injury turns out to be a bad one.

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