Alireza Jahanbakhsh says the progress of some of the young players at the club has been ‘amazing.’
Head coach Graham Potter has given opportunities to several members of the under-23s squad in Albion’s two Carabao Cup games so far and hinted yesterday that more will figure in tonight’s fourth round tie against Manchester United at the Amex.
Jahanbakhsh, who scored in the wins over Portsmouth and Preston, is not surprised that Potter and his coaching staff have faith in youth.
He said, “It’s been amazing to see. It’s fantastic that these young lads get their chance and have the opportunity to prove themselves to the manager and show they should be in the first team picture.
“You have to put yourself in their shoes. You would love to get this opportunity, you would love the chance to show your ability. That’s what the club is giving to these lads. I have been impressed by their performances and it shows there’s a really bright future for the club.
“I try to talk to them during training and games and I have a great relationship with them. I was in the same position at the start of my career and whenever I had my chance I tried to grab it. I was telling them the same.
“They need to aiming to be in the first team picture like Aaron Connolly, Steven Alzate and Ben White, who have come up through the ranks and have done well.”
The Iran international has been pleased that his strong Carabao Cup performances have resulted in appearances in the Premier League. He came on against Manchester United on Saturday and created Solly March’s stoppage-time goal in the 3-2 defeat.
“With our gaffer if you play well in the cup games you put yourself into contention for the Premier League and that gives you even more motivation,” he added.
“For me it doesn’t matter what the game is. I will give my all. I would never perform differently anyway. I always see these games as that chance to prove myself. I am eager to show the manager that I can play well.”