Former Manchester United star dubbed the ‘next Ronaldo’ set for big move

(Photo by Hong Wu/Getty Images)
(Photo by Hong Wu/Getty Images) /

This former Manchester United star is set for a big move.

It was the dying embers of the game. As the clock ticked down, deep into injury time Manchester United knew they were in trouble. The game was a must win, a draw would simply not suffice. The ball fell to an unlikely candidate outside the penalty box, but he made a clever turn and finished with aplomb.

As the ball nestled into the back of the net, there was pandemonium inside Old Trafford. The Stretford End had gone wild in adulation of their new hero.

Federico Macheda was just 17 years old at the time but it seemed that his goal could be a crucial title clincher in a fierce battle for the Premier League trophy with arch rivals Liverpool.

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Macheda was heralded as the next big thing. The new name on the lips of every United fan. When he netted against Sunderland in his next Premier League outing just 46 seconds into his cameo, the hype had well and truly reached its climax.

At the end of the season, as Cristiano Ronaldo departed for pastures new, the fans were not worried. The Red Devils had the perfect heir for the Portuguese superstar in Federico Macheda. It would be just fine.

Unfortunately the Italian forward never fulfilled that early hype. He scored just two more goals in the Premier League in the span of six years and embarked on a total of six loan spells during the process. All of them were relatively unsuccessful.

Now 28 years of age, and soon to turn 29, over a decade after his sensational debut goal, Federico Macheda finds himself in Greece at Panathinaikos and his career looks to have seen a revival.

Macheda has enjoyed his best spell in terms of goals in his senior career so far having found the back of the net 14 times in 29 appearances for the Greek outfit and it seems he could be set for a big move.

A report by Spanish outlet AS has speculated that Macheda could soon end up in Spain due to his fine form. They cite super-agent Mino Raiola as a key driving force behind any potential move.

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Why do you think Federico Macheda never made it at Man United?