Kevin Strootman
Kevin Strootman has made just six appearances this season after overcoming a knee injury Getty Images

Roma have quashed fears that midfielder Kevin Strootman suffered a recurrence of the knee injury that kept him out for eight months against Fiorentina, in a boost to Manchester United's hopes of signing the Netherlands international.

Strootman only returned in November following a cruciate knee ligament injury that saw him miss the World Cup and since his recovery, he has been nursed back to full fitness, making just six league appearances this season.

The 24-year-old was replaced after 34 minutes of the 1-1 Serie A draw with Fiorentina on Sunday 25 January with a knee problem but Roma manager Rudi Garcia says the move was a precaution given Strootman's injury history.

"It does not look like Strootman's injury is serious, but the doctor has seen him because his knee is still a delicate area," he said. "We must always be careful.

"Let's see what happens in the next few hours, Kevin has had a tough time of it with injuries and we hope it's nothing serious."

The news is a boost to United's attempts of tempting the midfielder into moving to Old Trafford during the summer transfer window, with manager Louis van Gaal having reportedly identified the player as his number one priority signing this summer.

Despite having spent upwards of £150m during the last summer window, United are likely to seek further signings to help bridge the gap between them and Premier League title challengers Chelsea and Manchester City.

Meanwhile, Roma owner James Pallotta has continually been questioned regarding United's interest and the American businessman is beginning to become agitated at the increasing speculation.

"I do get annoyed [at the transfer rumour mill]," he told Bleacher Report. "I think the papers have finally given up on the Strootman thing, because Kevin's come out and addressed it, saying he likes it in Italy and he has a five-year contract. And by the way, I wasn't going to sell him anyway.

"We want to put the best team on the pitch, that's the most important thing. But we're businessmen. If someone comes in with a stupid number for a player, you have to listen to it. You can't just say no, no matter what.

"My view is that I don't want Kevin to go, for example, but if someone offers a huge amount, you at least have to listen to them. You're running a team, so you have to look at what's best for everyone, not just one individual. That's the way the world works."