Newcastle boss Alan Pardew has demanded top-four form from his team after seeing them edge themselves six points clear of the battle for Premier League survival.
He said: "When we went to Villa, I said to the team, 'We have got 15 games to go, we have got to be in the top four in the last 15 games', and we are, probably.
"We have had three wins out of four in that period and that has set us up nicely for the run-in now. That's the form we have got to maintain for the rest of the season.
"You look at the Premier League table and we have now put ourselves in a position to attack 10th, and that was the importance of the victory today.
"It wasn't about anything else for me, and that's how I tried to get the players' mindset. I said to them afterwards, we should attack the top 10 now, and we can with this team.
"What a considerable difference to six weeks ago it has made, the players coming back from injury and the new players."
Pardew later compared Cisse's stunner to the goal Alan Shearer famously scored against Everton on Tyneside in December 2002.
He said: "It was a wonder-goal, an Alan Shearer-type moment, from Cisse. That's one of the goal that will certainly get into Papiss Cisse's top 10, that's for sure.
"As soon as he hit it, you sensed it was in. He has got that in him, Papiss, he can get all types of goals. But it was a really great one today, fantastic."
However, Saints boss Mauricio Pochettino was convinced Cisse's strike should have been chalked off, citing a foul on defender Nathaniel Clyne and an offside decision which was not given during the build-up.
He said: "We are very sad about the result, especially taking into account how well we started. But especially after we got the first goal, we couldn't really control the game as we should have.
"We went in at the end of the first half losing the game and for their second goal, it is clear that there was a foul on Clyne, and then that was followed up by an offside. That is clear on the images.
"It's not a complaint, but these are details that had an influence on the end-result of the match."