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Pressure is on Portugal in playoff

Updated: November 15, 2011, 10:28 AM ET
By Michael Cox | Special to ESPN.com

International football seems to be increasingly unpopular these days -- for various reasons, the club game has completely superseded it, both in terms of quality and reputation. International friendlies are considered irrelevant, while international qualifiers are often a formality for the bigger teams that naturally attract the most attention.

However, the biennial playoffs for the World Cup or the European Championships are international football at its most intriguing. Here, ...

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