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Joe Kinnear thought he had spotted a special talent on a scouting trip to Birmingham – only to be told he was ­already a NEWCASTLE player, writes Alan Oliver in the Sunday People.

Toon director of football Kinnear raved to City chiefs about midfielder Shane Ferguson during the club’s Capital One Cup tie against Swansea in September. But when he asked about signing him, Brum bosses thought he was winding them up – because Ferguson is on loan at St Andrews from Newcastle until the end of the season.

Newcastle chiefs and manager Alan Pardew, who saw his side beat Chelsea 2-0 yesterday, were said not to be aware of Kinnear’s blunder.

A City source told Sunday People Sport: “Ferguson had a particularly good game that night and Joe Kinnear told one of our officials he was interested in signing him.

“At first our guy thought he was joking but then he realised Kinnear did not know Ferguson was already a Newcastle player.”


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