Some quotes have come out in the past week from both Federico Macheda's agent Giovanni Bia and Stuggart director of sport Fredi Bobic that has led to speculation that the striker may be headed to Germany. Here is what Bia had to say last week:
"We are at an advanced point with Stuttgart. Negotiations are going well but he is a player who is liked by a lot of clubs. He'll join a club on loan with the option to be signed outright as his contract expires in June 2014."
- Bia | Source: Sky Sports
Bobic has confirmed this interest:
"We have been watching him for a while now. He is one of the players we have on our shortlist."
- Bobic | Source: Stuttgart Nachrichten
It's hard to believe Macheda is just 21-years-old still. Because of this, and because of his heroic curling effort at Aston Villa in April 2009 -- a moment that proved vital in winning the title that season -- there are certainly some who are willing to remain patient with the Italian. However, his seemingly lack of development is hugely frustrating and many fans seem to have also come to the conclusion that he simply won't make it at United. Recent loan spells at Sampdoria and Queens Park Rangers have not gone well for him and he's clearly lagging behind the quartet of Robin van Persie, Wayne Rooney, Javier Hernandez (Chicharito), and Danny Welbeck in the Manchester United strike force pecking order.
If Macheda makes the move to Stuttgart, it appears that the deal would initially be a loan with the Bundesliga side having the option to make it permanent. The youngster's current contract with United expires in the summer of 2014. The reality is that it appears more likely than not, at this moment in time, that Macheda's long-term future is not going to be at Old Trafford. If the club can get any sort of decent compensation for him, they should offload him when that opportunity presents itself. Thank you Kiko for that glorious at Villa Park and I hope nothing but the best for your footballing career -- whether that be at United or elsewhere*.