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A young Macheda celebrating a goal with Manchester United, source: www.goal.com

 

If one thinks of the untapped young talents of contemporary football, one can not forget Federico Macheda. Almost eleven years ago the transition from Lazio’s youth system to the Manchester United. Accompanied by the regret of the Lazio fans, aware of having missed the umpteenth Italian promise, and the corporate polemics, related to the law that does not allow under 16s to sign professional contracts. Macheda arrives at Sir Alex Ferguson’s court at the age of 16 and after a few months he made his debut in the Premier League (in place of a certain Nani), scoring the decisive goal in the victory for the Red Devils. The same script in his second appearance in the English league: game tied, enters the field and decides the game. A predestined player appears to everyone. Then that something magical is interrupted, the various loans around Europe (Sampdoria, QPR, Stuttgart, Doncaster, Birmingham, Cardiff, Nottingham Forest) marked by discontinuous physical shape until returning in December 2016 to Italy. Novara offers him a new opportunity to re-launch, he grabs it on the fly and returns to play at important levels. Even in Piedmont, however, the path ends badly, with the relegation of the club to Lega Pro and a Federico Macheda that fails to fully express his undisputed value. The striker of biancoceleste origins spoke at the microphones of Lalaziosiamonoi.it to analyze his delicate time as a professional.

 

Starting from the year that has come to an end, the salvation in the Serie B championship with Novara did not arrive. What did not work and how do you judge the season from a personal point of view?

“Honestly we had other goals, but we could not mesh and it was really a bad year. I’m very sorry because the fans do not deserve this. Personally I would say that the first six months have gone great, then this year I had other expectations, but I was not given the right opportunity and this has penalized me. I have never felt at the center of the project and trust is fundamental for a player like me”.

Looking back over your career: from Lazio to Manchester United your destiny seemed to be marked. Then the various loans and the failure to stay healthy. What happened?

“It must be said that the physical problems have accompanied me for several years. Since the days of Manchester for six years I have never been able to play a whole season due to injuries. But now I feel very good, this year I trained continuously and I’m sure it’s just taking the right training to show how much I’m worth. I am convinced that I am a player with many qualities and with the right environment, a bit of luck, I can show it to everyone”.

There has been talk of an interest of Salerno. Do you think it could be the right place to rediscover the motivations and why not, to try to return one day to Lazio?

“Yes, I also read something in January. But I think it’s just market rumors, because there is nothing concrete for now. It is clear that Lazio is a point of arrival for any player, even more so for me who have always been a fan of it. It would be the best for me”.

What do you think of Lazio performance this year. Is the failure to arrive in the Champions League a failure or is it just a disappointment?

“Absolutely we cannot call it a failure. Lazio deserved to qualify for the Champions League for at least two months. Unfortunately we reached the last two games with everything to play for and something did not work. The season, however, remains excellent and perhaps without the wrong referee at certain times we would be qualified for the Champions League”.

In Manchester you met the true Luis Nani: how do you explain the fact that at Lazio he has not managed to leave his mark?

“I do not know, a difficult analysis to do. Nani is a great player, I do not have to say it, but it’s also true that in Italy it’s not easy to settle in from the first year. Moreover, when he arrived in Rome he was not at the top physical form and when he returned to acceptable levels he found a ruthless competition in front of him with players who played with heart”.