Yohan Cabaye Strikes Twice as Newcastle Rout Stoke City

Jason LewisCorrespondent IIApril 21, 2012

NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, ENGLAND - APRIL 01:  Papiss Cisse of Newcastle United celebrates scoring the opening goal with team mate Yohan Cabaye (L) during the Barclays Premier League match between Newcastle United and Liverpool at Sports Direct Arena on April 1, 2012 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England.  (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
Alex Livesey/Getty Images

At St. James' Park (A.K.A. Sports Direct Arena), on a day of mixed weather, there was nothing mixed about the performance of Newcastle United.

In arguably a must-win match, The Toon notched an impressive 3-0 victory over a reeling Stoke City side that has only managed two draws on the road this Premier League season.

Newcastle was spurred on by a stunning performance from center midfielder Yohan Cabaye, who scored twice and added a beautiful assist on Papiss Cissè's 11th goal of the season.

Cabaye got the scoring started for the home side in the 13th minute when he put a Cisse header of the crossbar into the back of the net with a header of his own.

Three minutes later Cabaye sent a fantastic through ball to a streaking Cisse, who made no mistake in scoring his 11th goal in ten appearances.

The Frenchman would add one more in the 56th minute, bending in a ball from 20 yards out past diving Stoke keeper Asmir Begovic.

The victory is Newcastle's sixth in a row—their best run of form since 1996—and for the time being puts them three points ahead of Tottenham for the final Champions League spot for next season.

The schedule gets much more difficult in the coming matches for Newcastle.

After traveling to Wigan, Newcastle must play Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, Manchester City at home, and Everton on the road. Meanwhile, Tottenham's next three fixtures (After QPR today) include Blackburn at home, and Bolton and Villa on the road. 

Newcastle's chances for next season's Champions League berth lies in the outcome of those matches. But if their great late-season form continues, the Geordie nation might be traveling come next season.