Miralem Pjanic explains why he signed new Roma deal – bad news for Manchester United?

Miralem Pjanic’s strong faith in the Roma project could mean that Manchester United could struggle to prise away Kevin Stootman from the Italian club.

Miralem Pjanic is one of the best midfielders in Serie A and was linked with a move away from AS Roma last season.

Having joined the Italian club from Lyon in the summer of 2011, the Bosnia and Herzegovina international has developed into one of the key players for coach Rudi Garcia’s side.

The former Metz star took his game to a new level under Garcia in 2013-14, scoring six goals and providing as many assists in 35 Serie A appearances, as the Giallorossi finished second in the league behind eventual champions Juventus.

Pjanic was linked with moves to a number of top European clubs, including Manchester United (who reportedly wanted him in January), Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain, but the 24-year-old decided to remain at Roma, signing a new contract in May that will see him stay in Rome until June 2018.

The star player has now explained why he committed his long-term future to Roma.

‘I signed a new deal because I believe in Roma's project, in this team and in this coach’, he told Il Corriere dello Sport. ‘It was an easy decision... I love the people at Roma, I love the club and I love the city. This is the perfect place to develop’.

Pjanic’s comments about believing in ‘Roma’s project’ could be an indication that his teammate Kevin Strootman could snub interest from United this summer.

The Netherlands international is one of the best central midfielders in the world and is rated so highly by Red Devils manager Louis van Gaal that he is reportedly prepared to wait until January to see how his compatriot progresses from his knee injury and then sign him (click here to read more).

However, given Antonio Conte’s resignation as the Juventus coach last month and the uncertainties over the futures of some of the Bianconeri’s star players including Arturo Vidal, Roma’s ‘project’ could finally bear fruition in 2014-15.

The Rome-based club are many Serie A followers’ favourites to win the Scudetto this season and their project, which started the same time as Juventus’s, could now come good.

Strootman himself has given no indication that he wants to leave Roma after just one season at the Stadio Olimpico, and Garcia has said that only an offer of £79 million will make them enter negotiations.

Judging by Pjanic’s strong words about Roma and his faith in the club’s future, it is very much possible that Strootman feels the same way and may not be eager to leave the club for United, who are at the start of a massive rebuilding operation.

But then again, in football you never know...

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