Man Utd news – Macheda eyes 1st team return, Fletcher back to fitness, Fergie: Chelsea main contenders

Macheda eyes 1st team return.

Federico Macheda is determined to prove his worth at Manchester United this season and break into the first-team.

The 20-year-old striker spent the second-half of last season on loan at Sampdoria and had been linked to a loan move to QPR and Newcastle United before the close of the summer transfer window but the Italy Under-21 player stayed at Old Trafford.

Macheda is determined to train hard and break into the first-team ahead of Wayne Rooney, Javier Hernandez, Dimitar Berbatov, Danny Welbeck, Michael Owen and Mame Biram Diouf.

He said on Twitter: “Tomorrow back to training. I’m gonna train so hard this season and show people that I’m here as well. I’m ready to show what I can do!”

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Fletcher back to fitness.

Darren Fletcher is happy with his fitness after playing a full 90 minutes at senior for the first time this season in Scotland’s Euro qualifier against Czech Republic.

The Manchester United midfielder grabbed an assist and a goal at Hampden Park on Saturday but was left disappointed by refereeing decisions as the visitors were awarded a penalty which was converted to level the scores at 2-2 moments before the Scots were denied a spot-kick.

The 27-year-old is unhappy with the result but he is pleased with his progress and fitness having played 90 minutes of football at the highest level for the first time since last term, he told Manchester United’s official website: “I felt good, I had to dig in for the last 20 minutes but I’ve been in that position before so it wasn’t strange for me to do that. But I feel good and I’ve no knocks or anything like that.”

Fergie: Chelsea main contenders.

Sir Alex Ferguson believes Chelsea are real title contenders this season and is sure the Blues’ new manager Andre Villas-Boas will do well at the club, The Guardian reveals.

The Manchester United boss said that Chelsea’s most senior players will be key for them this season as their experience and ability makes the side a ‘big threat.

He said: “They have tremendous experience with the likes of Frank Lampard, Didier Drogba, Petr Cech, John Terry, Alex, Nicolas Anelka, Fernando Torres – there aren’t any young kids in that team. But they don’t have 36- or 37-year-olds like Ryan Giggs. Lampard and Drogba are 33, Anelka is 32 – not dissimilar to [Michael] Carrick and Rio Ferdinand, and we wouldn’t be saying they are dead and buried, would we? So why should they be? They’ll still be a big threat and we expect them to challenge.”

When asked if there are any similarities between his experience as a young manager at East Stirling to Villas-Boas’ start at Chelsea, Ferguson replied: “He has a different set-up there to me, but I’m sure he’ll get plenty of advice from others and he’ll do fine. I don’t know much about him. He’s a young man and it’s a big step coming into the Premier League from the Portuguese championship, but given time and support anything is possible.”

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