Both AS Roma and the Dutch national team have received a massive blow, with midfielder Kevin Strootman set to miss the rest of the season and the World Cup with a torn left anterior cruciate ligament. He collapsed in a heap during the giallorossi's Serie A defeat to Napoli on Sunday, and now faces several months on the sidelines.
The 24-year-old has been an instrumental part in Roma's revival this season, after joining from Dutch club PSV for €17 million in the summer. Appearing in all but two of their Serie A matches, he gelled perfectly in the box-to-box role of Rudi Garcia's midfield trident, providing the muscle and legs to complement his creative partner Miralem Pjanić.
With an already wafer-thin squad, this news comes as a big blow to Roma's ambitions of finishing second in the table, though it's just as much as a concern for Dutch coach Louis van Gaal. There are already doubts about the strength of the Oranje midfield, emphasised by their disappointing 2-0 defeat to France in the recent slate of international friendlies. Without a doubt, this injury weakens them even further.