Head coach Javi Gracia has suggested Danny Welbeck may have to wait for his opportunity to start for Watford after making his debut in Saturday’s 1-0 defeat at Everton.

The summer signing replaced Will Hughes midway through the second half at Goodison Park to get his first taste of competitive action after suffering a serious ankle injury in Arsenal’s Europa League clash with Sporting Lisbon on November 8.

The striker understandably looked a little rusty after coming off the bench and Gracia said: “It was a long time out of the pitch and in this moment I am sure he will be really tired, but enjoying the moment, helping the team and I am sure in the future he will be able to help us.”

Asked how long it would be before he expected Welbeck to able to be included in the starting XI, Gracia responded: “It will depend on other things. If other players keep a high level then some players have to wait for their moment.

“But Welbeck in this case and (Ismaila) Sarr, both came two weeks ago and they have to try recover their best condition and try to be available and after I’ll decide.”

Following such a lengthy lay-off, the 28-year-old was delighted to get some minutes under his belt, but knows it will take time for his sharpness to return.

“It was great to get on the field,” he told the club website. “It's been a long time coming and something I've worked hard for. I've not had a full pre-season and I've only had three or four training sessions, so it's a bit new to me, being on the pitch with new players. I'm going to keep on training hard during the week and hopefully be sharper next week and I'll be ready to go.

“I was a bit rusty but I did the best I could. I've been working outside on my own and had a lot of support from different trainers and the support of family and friends. They've kept pushing me along and it's great to be back.”