Newcastle moved six points clear at the top of the Coca-Cola Championship table with a 2-1 win at Watford.
Argentina defender Fabricio Coloccini headed home the second goal of his Newcastle career in the fourth minute before Andy Carroll made it 2-0 in the 50th minute.
Will Hoskins netted what proved to be a consolation for the home side in the final minute.
West Brom moved second above Nottingham Forest with a 3-1 win at home to Derby thanks to a Chris Brunt double and a goal from Simon Cox.
Chris Porter had given the visitors the lead four minutes into the second half before Brunt (67 and 77) swung the game in West Brom's favour and Cox (82) netted the clincher.
Leicester strengthened their grip on fifth with a 3-0 home win over Nottingham Forest which saw the visitors drop to third in the table.
All the goals game in the second half after Bruno Berner (68) opened the scoring. Paul Gallagher (79) and Andy King (81) secured an important win.
Meanwhile, Ten-man Preston dented Cardiff's promotion hopes as Jon Parkin scored twice in a 3-0 victory, Reading's improved form continued as they thumped Sheffield Wednesday 5-0 and Jamie Ward scored twice as Sheffield United edged a seven-goal thriller against Plymouth at Bramall Lane.
Coventry hung on to beat Scunthorpe 2-1 despite having a player sent off with half an hour left, while Neil Warnock saw Crystal Palace draw 1-1 at Doncaster in what was expected to be his last game in charge.
Elsewhere, Middlesbrough beat QPR 2-0, Swansea beat Peterborough 1-0, Iain Hume earned Barnsley all three points with the only goal at home to Blackpool and Ipswich were held goalless at Portman Road by Bristol City.
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