Federico Macheda spoke exclusively to ManUtd.com ahead of the start of the Barclays Under-21 Premier League Elite phase...
You’re having a great season for the Under-21s – are you pleased with your form?
Yes but actually it’s most important for me to get fit for myself and help the team to get through to the second stage of the competition.
Coach Warren Joyce spoke about getting you back to full fitness. Do you feel in peak shape?
I think I’m very fit now and very happy. I have to thank Warren. He works very hard for me and after training as well. I have to say he’s helped me a lot to get fit and get me on track again so it’s also thanks to him.
Is it quite a difficult position to play as a lone striker sometimes in the Under-21s?
Well, we play with three up front most of the time but myself on my own in the middle which is good because I can go in all areas up front and have the support from midfield. So I wasn’t alone but had help from the team as well.
You were hitting top form before Christmas and, of course, scored the goals that helped take United through..
Yes, it was important for me and the team. We had to win our last two games otherwise we would have been out of the second stage. So it was very good for us to win them both. For a team like Manchester United, even if it’s the first team or the Reserves, you have to fight for everything you know.
Do you combine so impressively with Davide Petrucci because you know him so well?
Actually, I’ve been playing with him around 11 years! I’ve known him since I was 10 years old so we know each other very well! I lived five minutes away from his home in Rome. We are very good friends. I hope now he’s gone to Peterborough that he starts to show he is a top player. He has had many injuries and I think he deserves that chance.