Roma boss Rudi Garcia says the club will wait as long as it takes for Leandro Castan to return from brain surgery.
It was revealed on Thursday that the 28-year-old defender is facing an unspecified spell on the sidelines with a neurological problem that has restricted him to just one Serie A appearance this season.
However, Garcia insists that the Giallorossi will stand behind Castan, who he has no doubt will come back even stronger from an operation to resolve an accumulation of fluid caused by swelling of the brain.
Asked during a press conference on Friday if he knew when the Brazilian would be in a position to resume his playing career, the Roma coach replied: “I’m not a doctor There are professionals who will evaluate him.
“But he’s a Roma player and we are all behind Leo.
“After his surgery in December he will return to being a Roma player. We will wait for him.
“But now we must leave him alone. He’s a warrior; he will soon be back at 200 per cent.”
Indeed, the Giallorossi have won just three of their subsequence seven games in all competitions, a run which included a demoralising 7-1 Champions League loss to Bayern Munich.
However, Garcia retains the utmost faith in his team and is in no doubt that they can challenge for the Serie A title, with Roma still just three points behind leaders Juve.
“I’m satisfied and happy with what we’ve done so far this year, apart from the first half against Napoli
“The ambition is to win the Scudetto. We’ve got seven finals between now and Christmas, and tomorrow [Saturday] is the first.”
Roma will draw level on points with Juve if they beat Atalanta in Bergamo on Saturday evening, though the Bianconeri will reclaim the outright lead of Serie if they avoid defeat at Lazio later that night.