Papiss Cisse scored a brilliant goal in the third minute of injury time to beat Fulham 1-0 and seal three crucial points for Newcastle in the fight against relegation from the Premier League.
Newcastle hit the post three times in an impressive second-half showing but looked likely to come up short as a first goalless draw at St James' Park in 27 league matches beckoned.
However Cisse turned superbly with a Yohan Cabaye shot to finish from close range and send the home fans delirious. Indeed, he celebrated by leaping into the stand and into a gangway, where he was mobbed.
The win moves Newcastle up to 13th, six points clear of the bottom three and just three behind Fulham in 10th.
The first chance fell to Dimitar Berbatov, who prior to the match had scored in four consecutive Premier League games for the first time. Lolloping forward after picking up a loose ball, he curled a shot with the outside of his right boot just over the bar.
Steven Taylor blocked a Sascha Riether cross at full-stretch before calmly clambering to his feet and playing out of defence despite the presence of danger man Berbatov.
Riether was afforded that chance to cross when Davide Santon pulled up with a hamstring strain. Despite the loss of the attacking left-back after a quarter of an hour's play, Newcastle edged the first half through chances and crosses.
Cisse almost bagged a spectacular goal on 27 minutes when bending a strike just past the far top corner with Mark Schwarzer struggling and soon after he was left frustrated by a superb diving block from Fulham captain Brede Hangeland after bringing down a Taylor knockdown and shooting from the edge of the box.
The Senegalese was briefly the villain in swagman's colours when opting to shoot - well over the bar - instead of returning a pass to Sylvain Marveaux, unmarked in the centre of the box.
Bryan Ruiz was played in by a lovely Berbatov ball from the left as Fulham attacked three-on-three and only denied by a last-ditch block.
Berbatov was a threat throughout, but Fulham's best chance of the first half came when Newcastle failed to deal with a corner and Tim Krul produced a fabulous point-blank save to deny Stanislav Manolev from a few yards out.
The second half began scrappily with several late tackles flying in, one of which - from Moussa Sissoko - ended the afternoon of on-loan Ajax and Cameroon midfielder Eyong Enoh on his first Premier League start.
Newcastle grabbed a hold of the game from there. First Anita - who had replaced Santon - saw a shot deflect off Emmanuel Frimpong - on for Enoh - and land on top of the crossbar.
The home fans, warming up as the match wore on, could not believe that their side failed to score in the 64th minute: a corner from Marveaux was headed goalwards by Yoan Gouffran, only for Riether to deflect it on to the post - and Cisse following up could only strike the same post from two yards out.
Replays showed that Riether in fact used his arm to block the initial effort, but there were limited appeals - perhaps because of Cisse's rebound.
Berbatov thought he had scored with a free header from a John Arne Riise free-kick, only for Krul to acrobatically palm over.
With time wearing on and Fulham deeper than ever inside their half, Alan Pardew's side threw everything at them. Shola Ameobi, on for Gouffran, claimed a penalty under a challenge from general Hangeland while shooting - there was contact, but it did not look sufficient - then Cisse saw a header tipped around the post by the excellent Schwarzer.
But Newcastle were not to be denied: Cabaye's skidding strike from 30 yards was deftly cushioned by Cisse, who turned with it and scored while stretching.
He enjoyed the moment, running to the corner and joining the fans roaring their relief at three valuable points - and a fourth consecutive home league win.
NEWCASTLE: Krul 8, Simpson 7, S.Taylor 6, Yanga-Mbiwa 6, Santon 6, Marveaux 6, Sissoko 6, Cabaye 7, Gutierrez 6, Gouffran 8, Cisse 8. Subs: Anita 6, Campbell 6, Ameobi 6
FULHAM: Schwarzer 8, Riether 6, Senderos 6, Hangeland 7, Riise 6, Manolev 6, Enoh 6, Karagounis 6, Duff 6, Ruiz 6, Berbatov 7. Subs: Frimpong 6, Rodallega 6
MAN OF THE MATCH
Papiss Cisse - Guilty of missing one golden chance but was a danger throughout and struck a top-quality winner.