Macheda dreams of Rome glory
Federico Macheda can think of nothing better than lifting the Champions League in his home city.
By Nadia Carminati
Last Updated: 20/05/09 12:46pm
Federico Macheda admits he can think of nothing better than lifting the UEFA Champions League for Manchester United in his home city of Rome.
The Red Devils have the chance to become the first team since the competition's inception in 1992 to win successive titles when they face Spanish champions Barcelona at the Stadio Olimpico next week.
Macheda must first secure a place on the bench for the game and could get a chance to stake his claim against Hull on Sunday, with manager Sir Alex Ferguson almost certain to rest his star names ahead of the final.
The 17-year-old has already made a name for himself at Old Trafford this term after scoring two decisive goals in his first two appearances for the club, against Aston Villa and Sunderland respectively.
Plucked from the Lazio youth team in September 2007, the Italian has made no secret of his love for his home city as he looks to cap off what has already been a memorable season.
"It's a dream I've had many times in the last few days. Me with the champions in my own stadium, he told Corriere dello Sport.
"I hope it happens but I don't even know if I will be on the bench. Manchester have many great players and there is a big competition for places. It would be fantastic playing for just a few minutes."
Despite scaling heights that seemed unimaginable at the start of the campaign, the striker insists his feet are firmly planted on the ground.
"Here people think I am a hero but I have only scored two goals in the Premier League. I have done nothing and I must show my value.
"The most beautiful things arrive now and it is necessary to keep my head on my shoulders and continue playing football."
Meanwhile, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office has called on all United supporters to be vigilant when they travel to Rome.
The FOC are expecting up to 40,000 English fans to descend upon the Italian capital, even though the club have only been guaranteed 20,000 tickets.
Red Devils fans have also been advised to stay away from troublesome areas such as the Piazzale Flaminio, Ponte Duca D'Aosta bridge and Campo dei Fiori.
"This is a once on a lifetime trip for many fans and we want them all to have a fantastic time but it is important to make suitable preparations before travel," FCO sports liaison officer Alastair Mackie said.
"We have been working closely with the Italian authorities and the British Embassy in Rome to ensure that fans have support in Rome and access to all the information they need to ensure a safe trip.
"We would encourage fans to visit www.fco.gov.uk/football before their departure."