Solly March: Brighton boss Chris Hughton sets return date for winger

Solly March
Solly March is expected to miss Brighton's first five games of the new Championship season

Brighton manager Chris Hughton hopes winger Solly March will return from his long-term knee injury in September.

The 22-year-old England Under-21 international suffered anterior cruciate ligament damage last December.

"We are hoping to have him after the first international break," Hughton told BBC Sussex.

"The good news is he has had no setbacks and is making good progress. He is not training with the team at the minute but he is doing some ball work."

The 57-year-old added: "He is working very hard with the rehab department and we look forward to having him back as soon as possible."

March scored three goals in 17 appearances for the Seagulls last season before injury forced him off during the 2-2 draw at Derby seven months ago.

Meanwhile, Hughton is keen to keep hold of his best players, with midfielder Dale Stephens linked with a move to Premier League side Burnley.

Stephens, 27, played 45 league games last season as the Seagulls finished third in the Championship, missing out on promotion on goal difference and then losing in the play-offs.

"We don't want to lose players," Hughton said.

"We want to put ourselves in a position where we are able to challenge again. Speculation will always be there and it is something you have to live with as it is part and parcel of the game."

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