Little Buddha gets the boot
By Mark Kendall
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Ivan de la Pena has been dropped from Espanyol's squad for their game with Malaga.Ivan de la Pena has been dropped from Espanyol's squad for their game with Malaga this weekend after a dispute with manager Miguel Angel Lotina.
The midfielder, known as the Little Buddha, walked out of a training session on Saturday after being accused of a lack of effort by Lotina.
De la Pena threw his training top on the floor in a show of petulance before storming off following a chat with his boss.
As a result the Spain international will not travel with the rest of his team-mates this weekend, and Lotina admitted he had been left very disappointed by the player.
"Ivan trained very badly and I asked him for some explanations," he stated.
"He told me he was not happy for reasons I won't elaborate on and so I invited him to leave.
"He did not train like a professional and so the best thing for him is for him to stay at home and rest and we'll see if he commits himself to the group on Monday."
Lotina revealed that the fact de la Pena had not been assured a starting berth for the game in Malaga had played a part in the row.
"I tried out a certain style of play and he thought he was not going to play, I suppose it all came from there," he added.