Seeing a lack of progress in his career in England, Marcello Trotta returned to his native Italy with Avellino in January.
It was with Napoli that the young striker first cut his teeth in football, spending five years in the youth ranks with the Campanian club before departing the peninsula for England.
According to Trotta himself, he arrived on English shores alone to take on a new adventure, seeking to soak up a foreign language and discover a new perspective on football.
But while the Italian was prolific for the Cottagers’ U-21 side – scoring 24 goals in 33 games – he was never able to break through at the Premier League level.
Loan spells with Brentford and Wycombe Wanderers saw him impress in League One, but he would only ever make two appearances in the top two divisions.
Trotta turned out once in the Championship for Watford and only saw three minutes of Premier League action, in April 2012 against Bolton Wanderers.
Spending the first half of this season on loan at Barnsley, the 22-year-old took the decision to call time on his career in England in January, returning to his homeland.
With Trotta’s contract set to expire in the summer, the Craven Cottage outfit offloaded the striker to Serie B side Avellino – and at the Stadio Partenio, he’s taken off.
Trotta wasted little time establishing himself as a first choice option in attack, and has hit four goals in 10 Serie B appearances, earning plaudits for seizing his opportunity.
An Italy U-21 international, Trotta maintained a solid profile in his homeland in his years abroad, with his triumphant return seeming to confirm the positive feeling surrounding him in the peninsula.
Tutto Mercato Web had claimed that Juventus immediately dispatched scouts to watch the youngster, Trotta’s agent confirming an informal approach from the Serie A champions.
Now, the same outlet is reporting that Napoli have too sat up and taken notice of their former youth player, observing him in equal measure.
While on loan at Brentford in September 2013, Trotta admitted that he hoped to one day represent Napoli, having grown up just outside Naples and left the club as a teenager.
What the Italian likely never believed would happen in coming back to Italy just a few months ago is that Juventus and Napoli could be doing battle for his signature in the summer.
Trotta’s career has undergone a massive turnaround in a short time, although he’ll have to sustain his success at Avellino to ultimately earn a move to one of Serie A’s giants.
Repatriating so far appears to have been exactly what the former Fulham man needed to spark his rise to upper echelon of football – and now Trotta must use interest from two of Italy’s big boys as motivation to kick on and break through to the top flight.