Newcastle: Senegal international Demba Ba opened his goalscoring account for Newcastle with a hat-trick as the Magpies extended their unbeaten start to the season with a 3-1 win over Blackburn.
Alan Pardew's side maintained fourth spot after a stirring victory over Rovers, who remain mired in the relegation zone.
Another vital three points also means Newcastle's summer of discontent, with fans complaining about the club's transfer policy, is fast becoming a distant memory.
The Magpies were set on the road to victory when Ba pounced twice in the space of three minutes to go 2-0 up.
Although David Hoilett gave Blackburn hope to make it 2-1, Ba snuffed out any chance of a comeback with his third on 54 minutes.
Rovers finished the match with 10 men after Martin Olsson was sent off, giving manager Steve Kean another headache on a disappointing afternoon on Tyneside.
Pardew's biggest problem appears to be keeping expectations in check after his side's impressive start to the campaign.
Newcastle have now harvested 12 points from a possible 18 and have gone eight games without defeat in all competitions.
The win also snapped Rovers' run of five consecutive victories at St James' Park and will leave Newcastle confident of advancing when the two sides face each other in the League Cup fourth round next month.
Ba had arrived from West Ham in the summer but his signing failed to generate much excitement amongst Newcastle fans still seething at the exit of Andy Carroll to Liverpool in the previous transfer window.
However the 26-year-old was a constant menace to Rovers and his industry was rewarded on 27 minutes with his first goal for the club, turning Scott Dann cleverly and lashing in Leon Best's cross.
Three minutes later Ba celebrated his second of the afternoon, kissing the St James Park turf after nodding in from close range.
Rovers briefly threatened a revival with Hoilett's goal but Ba put the game beyond Blackburn's reach with his third on 54 minutes.
Newcastle's job became easier when Martin Olsson was red carded for a second bookable offence, a cynical tackle on Best, with 20 minutes remaining.