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Dec 8, 2009

'Naked' Pulis headbutted Beattie - report

Stoke are remaining tight-lipped on the alleged bust-up between manager Tony Pulis and striker James Beattie in the aftermath of their weekend defeat by Arsenal.

The latest raft of claims in the British press say Pulis was naked when he launched a headbutt at Beattie after he had emerged from the showers in the dressing room at the Emirates. The melee caused his towel to fall to the floor, say the Daily Mail.

The argument was reportedly over the players' Christmas party, which was due to take place in London over the weekend. Pulis is said to have cancelled the bash and insist the squad report for training instead.

Pulis is believed to have apologised to the players on Monday but Beattie is still considering a move away from the club in January.

The only comment on the row has come from Stoke chairman Peter Coates, who said: "As far as the club is concerned, this is an internal matter and will be dealt with internally."

Beattie came off the bench in the second half against Arsenal and has failed to start a Barclays Premier League match for the club since the 1-0 victory over Portsmouth last month.

Pulis signed the former England striker from Sheffield United for £3.5 million in last season's January transfer window and his seven goals in 16 games were instrumental in helping Stoke to finish 12th in their debut Premier League campaign.

But fitness problems have impeded his impact this term and the former Southampton and Everton forward has netted just twice in 15 appearances.

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