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Federico Macheda joins Stuttgart on loan

Federico Macheda is off to Germany.

Laurence Griffiths

In a move that has been anticipated, Manchester United striker Federico Macheda is set to join VfB Stuttgart on loan for the remainder of the season. Here is what the 21-year-old had to say about about joining the Bundesliga side:

"I have been following the action in the Bundesliga and of course I know VfB. I am delighted to be able to play for VfB with immediate effect. Now I need to get to know the team and to play my part. We have a lot of interesting games in three different competitions ahead of us."

- Macheda | Source: Stuttgart's official site

Stuttgart director of sport Fredi Bobic had this to say about the move for Macheda:

"We wanted to sign a striker and are very happy to have found one at Manchester United in Federico Macheda. The transfer discussions with Sir Alex Ferguson went very well. Federico is young and eager, which means he fits in very well at VfB. He has come here from a top international club, where he has proven his ability. We want to integrate him into the team as quickly as possible."

- Bobic

Macheda is behind the quartet of Robin van Persie, Wayne Rooney, Javier Hernandez (Chicharito), and Danny Welbeck in the strike force pecking order at United. That's a big reason why the Italian has only made three appearances this season, all as a substitute. Regular playing time is needed for his development and that is only going to happen away from Old Trafford. Hopefully though, this loan spell goes better than his recent ones with Sampdoria and Queens Park Rangers.

It's reasonable to question if Macheda has a future at United. Despite only being 21-years-old now, he's had a few years to further establish himself at the club. Since his memorable moments against Aston Villa and Sunderland in the spring of 2009 though, he's hardly contributed to the club and he hasn't shown much improvement. The current quartet of United strikers are unlikely to be displaced anytime soon and 18-year-old Angelo Henriquez has reportedly been impressing while on loan to Wigan Athletic. Will Macheda ever don the United shirt again?