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Troubling times for English football

Updated: February 9, 2012, 2:33 PM ET
By James Martin

Among the major allures of the English Premier League are the various distractions and dramas off the pitch -- the transfers, the gossip, the training bust-ups. We enjoy Joey Barton's Twitter martyrdom, or when managers come unhinged on camera (see: Roy Hodgson's head-banging antics) or, like Ian Holloway, give alarmingly honest answers in normally mundane postgame chat.

Then there are the really special times, those premeditated news conferences managers use to wage war. ...

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