Swansea City 1 Newcastle 0
SWANSEA City ensured there was no hangover from their Capital One Cup triumph as Luke Moore struck a late winner to give them a 1-0 victory over Newcastle.
The Liberty Stadium stirred with celebration as the League Cup trophy was paraded pitchside before kick-off, but it looked like the party atmosphere was set to be deflated by a goalless draw.
Moore, however, had other ideas and the substitute came on to claim his first league goal of the season with a cool finish in the 85th minute.
Victory saw Swansea move on to 40 points for the season, the mark which many regard as a guarantor of top-flight survival.
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Michael Laudrup made two changes to the side which romped to a 5-0 triumph over Bradford in last Sunday's Capital One Cup final, with Michel Vorm and club captain Garry Monk replacing Gerhard Tremmel and Ki Sung-Yueng.
A lethargic first couple of minutes suggested Swansea might have been a little wearied by their Wembley exploits, but they soon found their groove.
The attacking midfield triumvirate of Wayne Routledge, Pablo Hernandez and Nathan Dyer were effervescent, swapping positions and passing among themselves with the fluid panache which had overwhelmed Bradford six days earlier.
They carved the Newcastle defence open on a number of occasions early on, but the visitors offered stronger resistance than League Two's Bradford had done.
Steven Taylor was in particularly defiant mood, intercepting numerous crosses and blocking an acrobatic – but mi**** – effort from Ashley Williams off the line.
Swansea dominated possession but struggled to create scoring opportunities as the first half wore on, and Newcastle sought to disrupt the hosts' passing style with several robust challenges.
Their captain Yohan Cabaye and his fellow central midfielder Cheick Tiote were both booked as the interval arrived with tempers frayed and the game still goalless, though Swansea could have opened the scoring within two minutes of the restart.
Hernandez found the overlapping Angel Rangel on the right wing, and the defender's well-struck shot was palmed away by Newcastle goalkeeper Rob Elliott. The rebound then fell to Routldge, but his deflected shot was cleared off the line by Taylor.
Seemingly roused by this near escape, Newcastle had their first spell of concerted pressure with Pa**** Cisse and Yoan Gouffran both shooting over the bar from inviting positions.
Alan Pardew's side were just an inch or two from taking the lead after 67 minutes, as Cabaye's thunderous 25-yard effort was helped on to the bar by Vorm.
Vorm's opposite number Elliott was called into action ten minutes later, fending off a shot from substitute Ki after the South Korean had been released in the Newcastle box by Hernandez.
That seemed like being the Swans' final chance of the game, but Moore then found himself with a rare opportunity to grab the headlines.
The ball rebounded off Newcastle substitute Davide Santon and fell kindly to Moore inside the visitors' six-yard box and, showing composure and a deft touch, the substitute evaded Taylor's desperate lunge and found the bottom corner via a deflection from Cabaye.