Marseille's Garcia dismisses Strootman reunion rumours

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Marseille head coach Rudi Garcia has quashed speculation linking him with a move for Kevin Strootman and insists the club hope to keep hold of Lassana Diarra. 

Strootman played under Garcia at Roma from 2013 until the coach's departure in January, a period in which the Netherlands international struggled with a long-running knee injury.

Garcia, who guided Lille to the Ligue 1 title in 2010-11, remains an admirer of the 26-year-old, but dismissed any chance of the midfielder following him to Stade Velodrome. 

"Strootman is a fantastic man beyond being a fantastic player, of course I would welcome him with open arms, but he will stay in Rome," he told Telefoot.

Marseille are also rumoured to be facing a battle to keep former Arsenal and Real Madrid midfielder Lassana Diarra, who has been tipped for a move away in the January transfer window.

"It is logical that he wants to play for an ambitious club," Garcia said.

"[But] what we want, precisely, is to fulfil that ambition here."