It says much about the volatile narratives of Premier League football that Newcastle United now appear a model of good business. But so it seems after the summer dumping of Kevin Nolan and Joey Barton, and their replacement by the charming Yohan Cabaye. The French international won Newcastle the game on Saturday, having impressed all season with a touch and subtlety that rather evaded the departed Scouse axis. Having come from French champions Lille he was likely to be good, but few would have expected such a swift impression.
If India spent their summer graciously massaging England's cricketing esteem, the English are repaying the compliment this autumn. The captain, Alastair Cook, is appropriately enough leading from the front. The man who amassed 294 at Edgbaston has scored just 13 runs in his last three innings this series, which England currently trail 4-0. From Cook downwards, the summer kindness is being reciprocated.
Les Bleus left red-faced
Despite winning the toss and 'earning' the right to wear home colours in yesterday's World Cup final, France came over all magnanimous and allowed the All Blacks to remain exactly that, reverting to white themselves. Having already lost to the hosts in the pool stages in the same get-up, they didn't learn their lesson. With New Zealand already having home advantage, it seemed strange to let the All Blacks feel even more at home.