Federico Macheda burst onto the scene back in 2009. The Italian striker was rewarded with his eight goals in eight games for the Manchester United reserves with a place in the match day squad for the game that season with Aston Villa. We all know what happened next with his curling effort earning Manchester United what seemed an unlikely three points against Aston Villa on their way to the Premier League title.
The then teenager was tipped for a prosperous career but that has so far failed to materialise. The 21-year-old has now not scored a senior goal since netting in the 2-1 defeat to Crystal Palace in the League Cup back in the tail-end of 2011.
Since then playing time has been sparse in the Manchester United first team with just a splattering of minutes here and there meaning he has been consistently made available for loan over the past few seasons.
Such loan deals saw him take in time at both Sampdoria and QPR with equally poor results.
At Sampdoria he got his most extensive ever run in the first-team when the Genoa side were happy to give him a chance to prove himself on home turf. In the end however he failed to score and Sampdoria, who had finished in the Champions League places a year previously, were relegated.
His next stint on loan was with QPR last season which garnered a measly 33 Premier League minutes and produced no goals for the Roman.
So far this season he has been in good form at under-21 level but he was eager for regular first-team football at a top level and in January he had two options to choose from with both Stuttgart of Germany and Elche of Spain agreeing deals with United.
We advised that he chose Elche. Playing in the Segunda Liga they were also short in attacking options so he would have had ample first-team opportunities however the lure of the Bundesliga seemed to have an effect on Macheda and he chose Stuttgart.
So how are things going?
Again times are tough on a loan spell. He has featured in four Bundesliga games all as a substitute accumulating just 76 minutes of football. He has also made one substitute appearance a piece in the DFB Pokal and Europa League totalling at 52 minutes. In short he is yet to play 90 minutes and is still to find the back of the net once again.
Whether things may have been different at Elche is one thing but if he doesn’t make an impact in the next few months his Manchester United career may finally be at an end.
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