After three rounds of Premier League action, the international break promises fresh twists following on from Euro 2016, with a raft of friendlies the appetiser ahead of the first qualifiers for World Cup 2018.
We’ve tried to ignore the obvious in bringing you a few potential plotlines over the next ten days or so.
Bartosz Kapustka, where are you?
The Poles certainly seem to like their 19-year-old, with some tipping the attacking-midfielder to go as far as Bayern Munich’s Bundesliga goal glutton Robert Lewandowski, while Leicester legend Gary Lineker described Kapustka as ‘deliciously talented’ during his Euro 2016 cameos.
Leicester ended up spending £7.5m on Kapustka, the Premier League champions’ third-most expensive signing so far this summer, but he hasn’t managed to make the pitch yet and slipped off the bench for the 0-0 draw with Arsenal, having stayed on it during the 2-1 defeat at Hull.
Poland coach Adam Nawalka has retained the youngster in his squad for their World Cup qualifying Group E trip to Kazakhstan, and Kapustka should be desperate to catch the eyes of his new employers once more.
Roberto Martinez in at the deep end
If Belgium have hired the attack-minded former Everton boss based on the solidity of their defence (on paper), it’s a ballsy move.
Martinez could even try out Toby Alderweireld, Jan Vertonghen and Vincent Kompany in a three-man centre-back line, which the Spaniard utilised to great effect when staving off relegation with Wigan in 2012.
The Rode Duivels host their new manager’s native Spain in a friendly before World Cup 2018 qualifiers kick off, which should be interesting all round.
On fire? Out
The greatest chant since the last great chant might not be heard in Northern Ireland matches again for a while as, after notching three goals in as many Championship matches for Wigan since failing to fire on opening day, Will Grigg didn’t make the current squad with his partner expecting a baby.
Ross County’s Liam Boyce will take Grigg’s place for the trip to Czech Republic, where Michael O’Neil’s men look a shade long at 17/4 for the win.
Considering Grigg has played half an hour of international football in the past 17 months, Boyce should probably just enjoy being there.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.