Spain were two points behind the French having drawn with them at home earlier in qualifying, following a 1-1 draw at home to Finland.
But the Spanish silenced any doubters as Pedro tapped in the winner early in the second half to secure a crucial win.
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Since Guus Hiddink arrived at the helm, Chelsea have improved considerably after a tricky start to the campaign.
Newcastle United are staring down the barrel of relegation to the Championship for the second time in the past eight years.