By Andreas Vou
OMONIA have announced the appointment of the experienced Spanish manager Miguel Angel Lotina after having parted company with former coach Toni Savevski a fortnight ago. Lotina is expected to arrive in the capital in the next few days to put pen to paper on his first job outside of his homeland.
The 56-year old Basque coach is a very well-known figure in Spanish football, having coached several top flight clubs in a long managerial career spanning over two decades. He is best remembered for his stints with Celta Vigo and Espanyol, where he guided the Galicians to the group stages of the Champions League, while he went on to win the Copa del Rey with the Catalan side.
Lotina, however, is renowned for a rather unwanted habit in his homeland – relegation. Four of the last five clubs he has managed have ended up dropping down to Spain’s second tier while at his last club, Villarreal, relegation for the senior team also meant the same feat for the club’s reserve side. Villarreal B, who were competing in the Second Division were automatically relegated as the league’s laws forbid any two teams of the same club to compete in the same division, though it should be noted that he only took over the club three months before the end of the season.
After Omonia’s impressive win over rivals Anorthosis in their last match, Lotina takes charge of a side sitting in fifth place and six points behind leaders AEL. Typically high expectations have been placed on the new boss and, as we know in this league, there will not be much time for him to prove himself.
For the man better known for his disappointments at the lower end of the table, Lotina will need to prove his worth at the opposite end, and quickly.