Julian Alvarez’s superb first-half goal was enough to keep City’s unbeaten start to the Premier League season going against a Magpies squad that pushed hard but posed little attacking danger for much of the game.
Phil Foden provided the creative sparkle for City in the absence of Kevin de Bruyne, who faces up to six months out after hamstring surgery this week.
The England playmaker set up Alvarez’s goal and created more chances after the break, with Erling Haaland wasting the best of them when he fired wide.
Newcastle matched City in midfield and upset the home crowd with their physical approach, with Foden and Rodri both on the receiving end of a couple of heavy challenges.
But it was in the final third where Eddie Howe’s side were lacking – something of a surprise after they scored five goals against Aston Villa on the opening weekend.
They did not manage a shot on target until the 70th minute, when substitute Harvey Barnes finally tested Ederson from outside the box, and despite some late pressure they did not create another clear chance.
With De Bruyne out for the foreseeable future and Bernardo Silva currently absent through illness, the question before the game was who would provide the attacking heartbeat for last season’s Treble winners.
Foden answered the call, almost single-handedly driving his team forward at times and asking Newcastle constant questions with his sharp turns and quick passing in their half.
The 23-year-old’s clever play made City’s winner, finding Alvarez in a rare bit of space on the edge of the Newcastle box before the Argentina forward provided an exquisite strike past Nick Pope.
More of the same followed after the break when Foden’s incisive run and pass almost released Haaland, with the Norway striker only denied a shot at goal by Fabian Schar’s superb last-ditch challenge.
The pair combined again a few minutes later and this time Haaland did escape the Magpies defence, only to fire wide with the goal gaping.
Foden kept probing, however, and almost got on the scoresheet himself when Haaland returned the favour and sent him galloping into the box late on – he fired wide, when a goal would have capped a superb individual performance.