Villa plunge into relegation zone

NEWCASTLE midfielder Yohan Cabaye scored a wondergoal in a 2-1 victory at fellow strugglers Aston Villa last night to complete a nightmare eight days for Paul Lambert’s beleaguered side.

Striker Papiss Cisse also netted as the Magpies, who handed debuts to three new signings, won for the first time in seven fixtures and climbed to 15th in the Premier League.

Villa’s Christian Benteke pulled one back from the penalty spot but could not prevent them following exits from both cup competitions with a defeat that plunged them into the relegation zone.

Newcastle boss Alan Pardew gave starts to Moussa Sissoko and Yoan Gouffran, who joined from Toulouse and Bordeaux respectively last week, and the former released Cisse for the opener on 19 minutes.

Cabaye volleyed an out-swinging second from 25 yards just after the half hour, and Benteke’s spot-kick, following a foul by Mathieu Debuchy on Gabriel Agbonlahor, failed to spark a comeback from Villa, who have now lost seven of their last 11 matches.

Villa’s loss was Wigan’s gain, as the Latics climbed out of the bottom three by salvaging a 2-2 draw at Stoke.

Defender Ryan Shawcross’s volley and a poacher’s effort from Peter Crouch put Stoke in control, but Wigan midfielder James McArthur finished with the outside of his boot to reduce the deficit and then set up forward Franco di Santo to sweep home an equaliser.

A heroic late block from Sunderland’s Titus Bramble denied Danny Graham and Swansea a winner in a 0-0 draw at the Stadium of Light.