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The Joy of Six: Premier League opening-day debuts

From Alan Shearer’s stunning statement of intent to the White Feather making his mark on Teesside, half a dozen memorable debut starts to the season

The first exchanges of the new Premier League were bathed in iridescent sunshine and the glow felt even warmer after a humdinger at Selhurst Park. Alan Shearer had turned 22 two days previously; he had cost newly-promoted Blackburn, awash with Jack Walker’s millions and carefree with ambition, a stunning £3.6m to snare from Southampton – for context, Neymar was six months old at the time – and there was considerable fascination in whether the trade between two unfashionable clubs would be successful.

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