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Things don’t get any easier in the Championship for cash-strapped Southampton as it’s a trip to table-topping Wolves next.

Gianfranco Zola has backed winger Savio to prove his worth at Upton Park.

The 19-year-old became the club’s record signing during the January transfer window when he completed a £9million move from Brescia.

However, he has endured a slow start to his career in England, making just one start for the Hammers.

Zola, though, believes his decision to sign the Germany Under 20 international will be vindicated before too long.

The Italian said: “We have expectations of him but we can’t forget that the boy is only 19 and has come here for the future.

“We’re going to try and improve him and to make him a better player.

“We know he has got great potential and he can become a really top player but the crowd and everybody needs to be patient with him.

The West Ham manager added: “He is only 19 and is very much willing to improve and we’re going to help him.

“We also need to allow him some time to settle down. The reason we signed Savio is that we see in him the potential that belongs to very good, special players.

“That’s the reason we bought him and we’re looking forward to working with him and making him a better player.”

Things don’t get any easier in the Championship for cash-strapped Southampton as it’s a trip to table-topping Wolves next.

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