The best is still to come from Jahanbakhsh - Hughton

Brighton & Hove Albion boss Chris Hughton says it might be next season when the Seagulls see the best of Iranian winger Alireza Jahanbakhsh.

Alireza Jahanbakhsh. Picture by PW Sporting Photography
Alireza Jahanbakhsh. Picture by PW Sporting Photography

The 25-year-old became Albion's club record signing when he joined for a reported £17m fee in July.

He has made 11 appearances but suffered a hamstring injury in the defeat at Everton in early November. He returned to action last month when he represented Iran at the Asian Cup and is now back with the Seagulls.

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Jahanbakhsh could return to the squad for this afternoon's home match with Watford and Hughton said: "We are yet to see the best of him but I think that's more circumstance as it's been very much stop-start.

"He came late, so it's adjusting to us, to pre-season, the division and then he probably got injured at a time when for his progress he didn't want to.

"He was starting to play and the more games he plays, he's adjusting to how we play and the league.

"He needed that longer period, so for his development the Asian Cup came at a bad time but now he's back it's about integrating back into the group again and going again.

"Because of the way his season has gone it might be next season when we see the best of him. But I'd like to think it might be in this final three or four months of the season."