Federico Macheda has urged compatriot Mario Balotelli to leave Inter and join Manchester City.
Striker calls for fellow Italian to join Manchester rivals
Manchester United striker Federico Macheda has urged compatriot Mario Balotelli to complete his proposed switch from Inter Milan to Manchester City.
Macheda, 18, left his homeland to join United three years ago, announcing himself to Red Devils' fans with a dramatic injury-time winner against Aston Villa on his Premier League debut in 2008.
Rivals Manchester City are looking to unearth an Italian gem of their own by luring Inter frontman Balotelli to Eastlands before the new season.
And Macheda, who spent time in the Lazio youth system, believes that young players in England get more opportunities than their Italian counterparts.
"He's coming to play in England because in the Premier League he will be a protagonist," said Macheda from the Italy U21 base in Tuscany.
"I'm proud to be playing in a championship that's different to ours (Italian) where a young player has the chance of playing.
"For a while there was a possibility that I would be sold and then Manchester (United) confirmed me and I'm delighted with that choice.
"In England someone like Balotelli would feel good and would play. I'm delighted he's been picked by (Italy senior coach Cesare) Prandelli (to play Ivory Coast in Wednesday's friendly), whether he deserves it or not only the future will tell."
While United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has sent two other strikers out on loan this season - Mame Biram Diouf and Danny Wellbeck - he chose to keep Macheda with the first team squad.