Swansea City’s cup celebrations continued as the Swans left it late to secure a narrow win over Newcastle, thanks to Luke Moore’s fortuitous strike.
An even game seemed to be heading for a stalemate before the late substitute popped up to grab his first goal in over a year and consign the visitors to an unfortunate defeat.
The home fans started the game in buoyant spirits after seeing their side pick up a first piece of major silverware in emphatic fashion in the Capital One Cup final the week before, with the Liberty Stadium in full party mood on a sunny afternoon.
The celebrations almost went into overdrive within the first 10 minutes, when Michu cleverly cushioned a free kick from deep back into the path of the unmarked Ashley Williams, but the Welshman’s weak shot from inside the six yard box was kept out of Rob Elliot’s empty net by an off-the-line clearance by Steven Taylor.
The Swans were obviously enjoying themselves, and Newcastle was forced to weather an early storm, with Mathieu Debuchy perhaps slightly fortunate to get away with a strong penalty appeal after the ball struck his hand inside the box.
However, Alan Pardew’s men soon started to get their own foot on the ball and take the sting out of the game, while a series of mistimed tackles left the hosts feeling ruffled going in at halftime.
Michael Laudrup’s side came out with renewed vigor after the break, and almost broke the deadlock when Angel Rangel surged into the box from full-back, only to see his fierce drive well blocked by the strong hand of Elliot.
Papiss Cisse got his first sight of goal 10 minutes into the second period, but the Senegalese striker was unable to pull something out of his repertoire of sensational strikes after being found on the edge of the box by Moussa Sissoko, instead lofting his shot over the bar on the half-volley.
Sissoko was back in the center of things just minutes later, as he pulled the ball back to Yoan Gouffran in acres of space just inside the penalty area, but once again Michel Vorm watched calmly as the ball was hit high into the stands.
Yohan Cabaye almost showed his compatriot how it’s done when he lined up a shot from all of 30 yards, but his dipping effort was tipped onto the crossbar by Vorm.
The Magpies were certainly in the ascendancy, and it was soon Sissoko’s turn to have a go from range, with his well-struck shot pushed around the post by the flying Dutch goalkeeper.
However, Elliot had to be on his toes when substitute Ki Sung-Yueng crept into the box to meet Pablo Hernandez’s crafty reverse pass, with the grateful reserve custodian saving well after the South Korean slipped as he took his shot.
The keeper was not so lucky minutes later though, as Wayne Routledge’s cross caused an embarrassing mix-up between Taylor and Davide Santon in the penalty area, allowing the loose ball to fall to the feet of Moore, who kept his cool to hit a shot that deflected off Cabaye’s desperate last-ditch tackle and into the back of the net.
It was a cruel blow for Pardew’s men, who looked the more likely to come out on top for much of the second half, but Swansea fans will have little sympathy as their side’s fantastic season continues.