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Wolfsburg's Diego banned for one game over penalty

BERLIN (Reuters) -- VfL Wolfsburg playmaker Diego has been suspended for one match for defying orders and taking a penalty in their 1-0 defeat to Hanover 96 on Saturday, new coach Pierre Littbarski said on Tuesday.

The Brazilian seized the ball from designated penalty-taker Patrick Helmes and then struck the spot-kick against the crossbar 10 minutes from time, in a defeat that led to the sacking of former England manager Steve McClaren.

Littbarski, a 1990 World Cup winner with Germany, who took over from McClaren on Monday, said Diego would not play against Hamburg SV on Saturday.

"Diego will not play. I have suspended (him) following the incident in our most recent game," said Littbarski, who was McClaren's assistant and is expected to stay until the end of the season.

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"After Saturday it will all be forgotten and he can show us again if he can be of help to us," he added.

Diego joined the 2009 German champions last year for a reported 15 million euros from Juventus but his team are only one point off the relegation playoff spot after a bad run that has seen them win just one of their last 11 league games.