Roma’s Strootman plays down Manchester United transfer link

The 24-year-old has been rumored with a switch to Old Trafford since last summer.

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Roma midfielder Kevin Strootman has played down speculation that he is lining up a move to Manchester United.

The 24-year-old has repeatedly been mooted as one of the main targets for United boss Louis van Gaal, but with the January transfer window in full operation he has revealed his intentions to repay the faith shown by his current employers.

Strootman told Sky Italia: "I’ve signed up for five years, but so far I’ve only been playing for six or seven months. I want to play and help the team. That’s important to me. If I spoke about other clubs that would be disrespectful, and I don’t want to do that."

The Dutchman was heavily linked to the Old Trafford team, as well as AC Milan, before moving from PSV Eindhoven to the Giallorossi in July 2013 for £15.6million. Strootman returned to competitive Serie A action recently from a serious knee injury picked up in March, which ruled him out of Holland’s run to third place in the World Cup in Brazil.

He added: "I worked for eight months to come back. I played against Sassuolo and I wasn’t good, then I came on against [CSKA] Moscow and wasn’t right. After the winter break, I’ve been training with more confidence, I feel better physically and I’m returning to 100 percent. I’m not there yet, but I’m coming back."

Van Gaal worked with Strootman during his time in charge of the Dutch national team ahead of his move to Manchester and is believed to rate him highly.

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Roma general manager Mauro Baldissoni told Sky Sports News HQ in December: "Strootman is a young player and we have a very long contract so we want to build our team around him."