Three sumptuous goals in six second-half minutes saw United come from behind to overcome Newcastle at the Marston’s Arena.
Mikael Silvestre and Ben Foster also completed 90 minutes each in their ongoing pursuit of match fitness, but it was the Reds’ young guns – and Welbeck in particular – who stole the show.
The Reds had to recover from the concession of an early goal against Manchester City last week, and it was the same story again as Newcastle took the lead after 36 minutes.
James Marwood scuffed his shot completely, foxing the United defence, and Jonathan Godsmark was on hand to hook a 15-yard shot past Foster and into the far corner.
Wesley Ngo Baheng should have put the Magpies ahead 10 minutes earlier, but slotted his shot wide of the post after bursting clean through. Chris Eagles had United’s best effort of the first half, but his low shot was saved by Fraser Forster after six minutes.
United went into half-time a goal behind, and also hampered by the loss of Rodrigo Possebon through injury. The elegant Brazilian was substituted as a precautionary measure after an awkward landing just after Newcastle’s goal.
Solid all evening in defence, Silvestre was involved as United drew level on 54 minutes, curling a superb ball into the area for the onrushing Macheda to control and stab home with the outside of his right boot - his first Reserves goal.
A minute later, Welbeck controlled a fine chipped pass from skipper Tom Cleverley inside the area and, despite briefly losing possession he recovered the ball, executed a sublime drag-back to find space and lashed a left-footed shot into the top of the net.
The game had swung irreversibly in United’s favour, and the balance was tilted even further on the hour mark as Eagles scored arguably the best goal of the Reserves’ season so far.
The winger fed Welbeck, ran onto the striker’s backheel, played a pass back to the striker through defender Ben Tozer’s legs and raced onto the return cross to slot home from close range. Absolutely incisive play from the pair, and yet another addition to Eagles’ growing collection of fine strikes.