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Everton slip to third successive defeat

Everton
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Tony Pulis draws line under alleged James Beattie incident

Tony Pulis insists a line has been drawn under his alleged physical confrontation with Stoke City striker James Beattie at Arsenal's Emirates Stadium.

• Reports: 'Naked' Pulis headbutted Beattie

Pulis and Beattie have been the subject of unwelcome headlines this week after it was reported that the Stoke manager had headbutted Beattie following a 2-0 defeat to Arsenal at the weekend.

A dispute over the players' Christmas party was believed to be behind the alleged row but Pulis has refused to comment directly on the details of the incident.

Instead, Pulis is adamant that the matter has been dealt with and that Beattie will be in his squad for Saturday's match against Wigan if he is fit.

"It's been different with a lot of focus on matters away from football," Pulis said. "But I've been in football 17 years and I know what to expect. I've always had certain golden rules and one is what happens in the dressing room stays in the dressing room for lots of reasons.

"One is respect: respect for that group and the players. It should be kept within the group. I've never felt the need to come out and discuss things that have happened.

"We've had a meeting with the group on Monday, where James was involved, and I've had a meeting with James himself. As far as I'm concerned a line has been drawn under it and we move on.

"We want to get on with playing the game on Saturday. James trained on Tuesday and was doing some shooting and felt his knee again so he had an injection on Tuesday afternoon.

"He didn't train Wednesday, won't train today but we're hoping he will be okay for Friday and if he is he'll be in the squad for Saturday and we'll get on with it.''

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