London: Newcastle boosted their chances of a top-four finish with a convincing victory away at West Brom on Sunday.
A double from Papiss Cisse and a strike from Hatem Ben Arfa gave the Magpies a commanding lead and although half-time substitute Shane Long scored shortly after the break, the visitors never looked likely to relinquish their lead.
For Newcastle, the victory went some way to making up for their 3-2 defeat to the Baggies in the reverse fixture in December. In that game the Magpies were 2-0 up before subsequently conceding three, however that scenario never looked likely at the Hawthorns.
And Alan Pardew's side made the perfect start, taking the lead after just 6 minutes.
10 million pounds January signing Papiss Cisse scored his first goal away from the Sports Direct Arena as he swept in a cross from former Marseille midfielder Ben Arfa.
Just five minutes later the same combination combined only this time it was the Senegalese Cisse setting up Ben Arfa to score his sixth goal for the club.
Stunned by the early onslaught, the hosts began to play their way back into the game however on the half hour mark Newcastle scored a third, as Cisse slotted in after another assist from Ben Arfa.
West Brom boss Roy Hodgson made a double change at the break, and just five minutes later his decision proved shrewd as Long pounced on a mix-up between Mike Williamson and Tim Krul to give the home side a chance of a comeback.
They struggled to build on their early second half advantage however, as Newcastle's defence held up to anything thrown at them.
There was a disappointing end to the game for the Magpies’ however as the impressive Cisse left the field on a stretcher with 15 minutes left to play.
Pardew's side now sit level on points with Chelsea, five points behind Tottenham in the last Champions League qualification spot whilst West Brom are still four points short of the 40-point mark that should guarantee survival.