Andelko Savic is determined to prove he has got what it takes to succeed in English football, according to Sheffield Wednesday development coach Lee Bullen.
It was just under a fortnight ago the Owls bolstered their attacking options by capturing the Switzerland under-21 international on a season-long loan deal from Sampdoria.
Savic, who began his career at youth level with FC Basel before moving to Sampdoria, claimed his first goal for Wednesday last Friday as their U-21s lost 2-1 to arch-rivals Sheffield United.
The 20-year-old’s attitude and workrate in training has impressed former Owls captain Bullen.
“Andelko is a lovely lad who wants to listen and learn,” he told The Star. “He’s still contracted to Sampdoria so we’ve got him on loan; he’s probably out to prove a point to his own employers and the people here that he can make a go of it in English football.
“He nicked a goal in a friendly the other week and then in the Steel City derby so he’s obviously got an eye for goal, which is great.
“It always helps when you come to a new football club and get on the scoresheet early, even if it is an U-21 game, as it just settles you down and boosts your confidence.”
Savic, who made his Serie A debut in January, is earmarked for the development squad in the short term. It is understood Wednesday have agreed a price to sign Savic, who has also represented Switzerland at U-16 and U-17 level, on a permanent basis next summer.
Nonetheless, Bullen insists the youngster needs to be given time to adjust to his new surroundings.
He said: “I think he’s still got a lot to learn in regards to the English game.
“Hold up play and handling the physical side of the game is completely different in this country. It is reacting after you have been on the attack and how you recover.
“I think there is tendency in Europe just to walk back into position after you’ve lost the ball but in England you have to work your backside off to get back into position and help your teammates. We are trying to put that across to him. He will learn and get there.”
“People have got to be patient with Andelko and not expect too much straight away,” Bullen added. “It is the same as when Caolan Lavery got his opportunity at first-team level.
“You hope that the supporters give them a bit of leeway because he is new on to the scene.”
Dave Jones, the Owls manager, plans on giving Savic a “few weeks to settle in and let him find his feet”.
“We’ve liked what we’ve seen so far,” he said.
“We think we might have a really good player on our hands.”