It seems a long time ago now that Federico Macheda burst onto the scene scoring his memorable goal against Aston Villa.
He is currently on loan at Bundesliga club Stuttgart, but as we reported yesterday his time there is proving a difficult one.
Since joining in January he has played just 76 minutes of football from the bench, and failing to score.
When you consider the striking options available to Manchester United and the fact that Javier Hernandez didn't even get a kick off the bench against Madrid, it's time for Macheda to consider moving on.
Fortunately he is being linked with a move best described as a 'dream' for him.
Reports in Italy are linking Macheda with a return to former club Lazio, describing the striker as the 'prodigal son'.
The reports state Macheda's representatives have been approached by the club with a view to a potential move.
However the Italian has told Bild he would be open to staying in Germany: "If Stuttgart want to sign me permanently, I would be very happy."
Macheda left Lazio back in 2007 amid much controversy, with the Italians gutted to lose their most promising star.
Now 21, Macheda will be fully aware he needs to enhance his international prospects and that doesn't mean playing sitting in the stands at Old Trafford.
A move back to his boyhood club would revitalise his career, and even though it would close a chapter at United, it is likely to be exactly what he needs.
Intriguingly Macheda faces Lazio for Stuttgart in the Europa League this week. Now wouldn't that be a story if he bagged the winner?
Before he got in trouble for using Twitter last year during his QPR spell, Macheda would regularly make a point of revealing his support for Lazio when they were playing, and if there was any club he would join from United, they are the one.
Lazio have had striking problems of late, forced to make short-term fixes, as shown by the signing of former Red Devil, Louis Saha on a free in January.
Macheda would be a far more long-term option, and a permanent move away to Lazio, or Stuttgart, could be just what he needs.
Is it time for Macheda to move on?
image: © apasciuto