With the tie finely poised after a 1-1 first leg draw a week earlier in Athens, Alan Pardew’s side saw off a spirited and determined Greek outfit who had their own fair share of chances, but in the end Newcastle proved too strong for their opponents.
Newcastle made it clear from the outset that they were in a hurry to wrap the tie up with minimal fuss, as James Perch and Sylvain Marveaux both tried their luck early on, the latter drawing a good save from Atromitos’ former Liverpool goalkeeper Charles Itandje.
Things appeared to be on course for Alan Pardew’s side but they suffered a blow inside the opening 10 minutes when Ryan Taylor was forced off with a knee injury after landing awkwardly.
It was his replacement Vuckic who opened the scoring shortly after coming on when, in the 21st minute, he ran on to Danny Simpson’s throw and lashed a shot goalwards which beat Itandje with the aid of a deflection.
Newcastle continued to dominate but there was a warning from the visitors when Chumbinho was played in, forcing Tim Krul into a smart save low to the Newcastle goalkeeper’s left.
Normal service was resumed immediately after however as Itandje refused to be caught out by a deflection again, this time adjusting his feet excellently to deny Demba Ba. Vuckic had at least two opportunities to add to his goal but saw further efforts blocked, and Gabriel Obertan terrorised Atromitos left-back Kostas Giannoulis with repeated ventures down the wing.
There was a real scare for Newcastle on the stroke of half time however when Krul spilled a shot from Denis Epstein. Chumbinho raced onto the loose ball and took it past the Dutchman, admittedly leaving a trailing leg but undoubtedly caught by the lunging keeper. It looked like a clear penalty but Swiss referee Stephan Studer instead booked the Brazilian for diving as a relieved Krul escaped unpunished for his error.
The second half began with a bang as Obertan very nearly doubled Newcastle’s advantage on the evening, but after that flash the away side – perhaps riled by their rejected penalty appeal – played with much more steel and started to enjoy far more possession than they had done in the first 45 minutes.
Itandje was again called into action as he pounded an Obertan shot away, while the visitors came within inches of squaring things heading into the final 10 minutes. However, Elini Dimoutsos’ shot from close range flashed the wrong side of the post.
Both teams pushed hard in the closing minutes but Newcastle were assured enough to see off the challenge of Atromitos, completing the job to ensure their safe passage to the first round.