Strootman an important player, insists Garcia

Roma coach Rudi Garcia has reaffirmed the importance of injured midfielder Kevin Strootman to his plans at the club.

The Dutchman is yet to feature for the Italian giants this term as he continues to recover from a cruciate ligament injury sustained in March.

Strootman was linked with a move to Manchester United during the close-season, but Garcia, who saw his side draw 1-1 at Manchester City in the UEFA Champions League on Tuesday, says he has no intention of letting the 24-year-old go.

"Strootman's an important player for us and I hope to have him available for the game at home to City [December 10]," Garcia is quoted as saying. "He's a top-quality midfielder and we're all really looking forward to having him back.

"We hope he comes back soon."

But while he is keen to hang on to Strootman, Garcia knows it may not ultimately be his decision.

"You'll have to ask our president," he added. "But the club's intentions are very clear."