Cabaye stars for soaring Magpies
Yohan Cabaye struck twice in a 3-0 win as Newcastle powered their way past Stoke to claim a sixth successive Barclays Premier League victory.
The Frenchman scored with a close-range 14th-minute header and then after providing the pass from which Papiss Cisse claimed his 11th goal in 10 games, beat Stoke goalkeeper Asmir Begovic with a curling 57th-minute shot to edge the Magpies closer to Champions League qualification.
Alan Pardew's side might have won even more comfortably with Begovic making a series of saves and skipper Fabricio Coloccini heading just wide on a day when the Potters were well beaten.
The hosts took the lead after 14 minutes. Hatem Ben Arfa, having spent most of his time until that point wide on the right, turned up on the left to bamboozle Marc Wilson and chip an inviting cross to the far post.
Cisse powered a header back across keeper Begovic and waited for the net to bulge, but his disappointment at seeing the ball come back off the crossbar was short-lived as Cabaye stopped to convert the rebound.
Roles were reversed four minutes later as Stoke were carved wide open by the brilliance of the former Lille midfielder.
Cabaye collected Jonas Gutierrez's pass in the middle of the field and, having spotted Cisse's run, slid an inch-perfect ball into his path for the Senegal international to dispatch it left-footed past the helpless Begovic.
Stoke threatened sporadically from set-pieces, but without forcing keeper Tim Krul to make a save.
Demba Ba and Cisse were proving too hot to handle, and they combined to good effect once again eight minutes into the second half for the latter to find the back of the net from close range after Begovic had spilled the former's shot, although from an offside position.
But they had to wait just four minutes longer for the third goal to arrive when, after Ben Arfa and Ba had probed at the visitors' defence to little real effect, Cabaye took charge to curl an unstoppable shot across Begovic and into the bottom corner.