"Edwin says himself he made a mess of it, and they had a couple of near things after that. It was going to happen some time, and it is out of the road now," he added.
United have the extra cushion of a game in hand over both their nearest challengers, and could deal a fatal blow to Liverpool's hopes when the two sides meet at Old Trafford a week on Saturday, 14 March.
By contrast, Wednesday's defeat leaves Newcastle just a point clear of the relegation zone with 10 games remaining.
But asked if he believes they will survive, caretaker boss Chris Hughton said: "Yes, I do.
"It's vital that we put on that type of performance right through to the end of the season. I was delighted with the performance.
"In the form that Manchester United are in, to be able in a lot of periods of the match to take the game to them, take the lead and go very close to getting a second speaks volumes for this group of players."
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