NEWCASTLE United moved up to fifth in the Premier League (for the time being) thanks to goals from Moussa Sissoko and Yoan Gouffran.
The pair gave Alan Pardew’s side a hard-fought 2-1 victory over West Bromwich Albion at St James’s Park.
Gouffran put Newcastle ahead late in the first-half, but Chris Brunt levelled for the visitors after the break.
However, Sissoko claimed all three points for United with a stunning 57th-minute strike.
And the Newcastle’s fourth successive victory saw saw the club climb above the two Manchester clubs and Southampton in the league table ahead of tomorrow’s games.
Pardew made one change from the team which had beaten Norwich City on Tyneside seven days earlier, with Mathieu Debuchy having come in for Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa at right-back.
Both sets of supporters paid tribute to former United midfielder Gary Speed in the 11th minute on the two-year anniversary of his death.
After a largely scrappy opening 20 minutes, which saw goalkeeper Tim Krul turn a James Morrison free-kick round the post, United started to apply themselves in West Brom’s half.
After good work from Sissoko, Mathieu Debuchy crossed for Loic Remy, whose goal-bound header was blocked by Billy Jones.
With 25 minutes gone, Sissoko made a powerful forward run and found Shola Ameobi, but the striker’s left-footed shot was weak and easily gathered by visiting goalkeeper Boaz Myhill.
But Myhill, under pressure from Ameobi, made a mess of Cabaye’s 36th-minute corner. Myhill punched the ball in the air, and it was met by Gouffran’s head when it dropped in the six-yard box.
The strike was Gouffran’s fifth of the season, and came just seven days after he scored what turned out to be the winner against Norwich City at St James’s Park.
Newcastle pressed for a second goal, and Pardew was incensed that referee Phil Dowd failed to penalise Jonas Olsson for a foul on Remy before the break.
Cabaye found Remy just outside the West Brom box, and the forward turned Olsson, who grabbed his shirt to stop him getting a clear run at gtoal. Remy took a tumble, but Dowd waved play on.
And United were left to rue that decision when Chris Brunt equalised early in the second half.
Morgan Amalfitano’s right-wing cross was headed on by Shane Long, and Brunt, unmarked at the far post, cracked it past Krul with his left foot.
Newcastle, however, were soon back in the lead. Remy headed the ball into Sissoko’s path 25 yards from goal, and the midfielder unleashed a fierce right-footed shot into the top right-hand corner.
Myhill was well beaten, and Sissoko raced to the dugout to celebrate with his colleagues in the dugout.
Pardew threw on midfielder Vurnon Anita to settle his team down for the last six minutes
And United – who take on Swansea City at the Liberty Stadium on Wednesday night – saw the game out to move within a point of second-placed Liverpool.
NEWCASTLE UNITED: Krul; Debuchy, Williamson, Coloccini, Santon; Sissoko (Cisse, 90), Cabaye, Tiote, Gouffran; Shola Ameobi, Remy (Anita, 84). Subs not used: Elliot, Yanga-Mbiwa, Obertan, Sammy Ameobi, Ben Arfa.
WEST BROMWICH ALBION: Myhill; Jones, McAuley, Olsson, Ridgewell; Morrison, Mulumbu; Amalfitano (Gera, 88), Sessegnon (Anichebe, 77), Brunt (Berahino, 76); Long. Subs not used: L Daniels, Popov, Lugano, Yacob.
Goals: Gouffran 36, Brunt 53, Sissoko 57
Bookings: Brunt 28, Tiote 32
Referee: Phil Dowd (Stoke-on-Trent)