Kevin Strootman: "I hope to become a leader at Roma"

Strootman:
© PA Photos
Kevin Strootman says that Roma boss Rudi Garcia convinced him to move to the Italian capital.

Roma midfielder Kevin Strootman has revealed that coach Rudi Garcia played an instrumental role in his decision to leave PSV Eindhoven for the Italian capital.

The 23-year-old Dutch international joined the Giallorossi in a deal worth round £15m, although a number of clubs - including Manchester United - were rumoured to be interested.

"I didn't really know the coach, but he is one of the reasons why I am here," he told La Gazzetta dello Sport. "I spoke to him on a couple of occasions before I joined and I liked him. He filled me with enthusiasm by telling me how he wanted me to play.

"No side seriously came forward for me apart from Roma. I also asked [former AC Milan midfielder] Mark van Bommel and [ex-Roma goalkeeper] Maarten Stekelenburg for information.

"I'm happy to be here and I like the project at this club. I know that the last two seasons have not gone well, but I can't wait to get started. I hope to become a leader at this club."

Strootman moved to PSV - along with now-Napoli winger Dries Mertens - from Utrecht in 2011.

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