Leyton Orient players forced to stay in hotel for a week after Hartlepool defeat
• 18 players and six staff confined to Marriott Hotel in Waltham Abbey
• Club’s owner Francesco Becchetti made the decision following 3-1 loss Hartlepool scoring against Leyton Orient
Leyton Orient’s first team have been ordered to spend the week in a hotel following their defeat to struggling Hartlepool.
The 18 players and six members of staff, including manager Ian Hendon and assistant Andy Hessenthaler, were reportedly told of club owner Francesco Becchetti’s decision as they travelled back from Sunday’s 3-1 League Two loss.
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The players and staff have been staying at the Marriott Hotel in Waltham Abbey – five minutes from their training ground – though they have been allowed out in their spare time to visit family.
Hendon told the Daily Mail that the move – an attempt by Becchetti to halt a slump in form that has resulted in two wins in the past 12 League games - would “help team bonding”. He added: “I wouldn’t want to be the one paying the bill. The owner has had different sporting ventures over the years and he said sometimes it’s good to get together and spend time together.”
Hendon said there was no word yet on whether the players would be allowed home if they beat York on Saturday.
“If we win four or five-nil the owner might ask us to move here permanently. We’re not trying to hide anything. We’re staying at a hotel. There are plenty of army camps I know about in deepest darkest woods if we wanted to do that.”
Becchetti made headlines earlier this month when Albanian authorities requested he be extradited to face trial. The Italian businessman is accused of fraud-related offences and money laundering over a failed hydroelectric scheme that allegedly cost the government tens of millions of euros in grants and unpaid taxes.
Becchetti, who is currently awaiting a procedural hearing in London on 7 December, has strongly denied the charges, accusing the government of making “baseless accusations” against him.