To chav or not to chav?

Yesterday Manchester United’s Federico Macheda stirred up a bit of a rumpus (and made both Italians and Brits alike giggle a bit) when he described Wayne Rooney as a ‘coatto’, which translates (very loosely, we’re told) as ‘chav’ in English.

Macheda used the term – which actually comes from a form of house arrest minor Roman gangsters had to endure in the 60s and 70s, fact fans – in an interview with the Italian sports daily La Gazzetta Dello Sport when talking about the Liverpudlian. However, it seems everyone has got the wrong end of the stick, as Macheda himself is a massive coatto. You only have to take a look at this picture in The Sun to see what we mean.

‘This isn't as bad as it sounds because Macheda is a chav himself,’ said a friend of Macheda. ‘His dad's an odd-job man and his mum's a cleaner so he's hardly from middle class stock and wasn't talking down to Wayne. I doubt they'll be falling out.’

‘When I used the term coatto, I didn't mean any offence to Wayne for whom I have the utmost admiration and respect,’ said Macheda, clarifying the situation. ‘All I meant is he is down to earth and friendly.’

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