Highly expensive centre forward Alan Shearer is not the only new arrival to hit Newcastle in the last couple of weeks. Just as welcome and equally surprising to his parents, if rather less costly, is young Robert Crawford. He was born in the hospital next to Newcastle's ground, St James's Park, on the same day that Shearer was signed from Blackburn Rovers.
His father Iain, London School of Economics' high-profile head of press and public relations, had rather hoped that he would be born in Scotland but Robert proved unduly impatient in transit. Like father, like son perhaps. The otherwise impeccably Scottish Iain has to admit to being born in Sunderland - almost on the doorstep of Roker Park, home of Newcastle United's fiercest rivals - shortly after his parents moved across the border.