Rio Ferdinand hasn’t always been a huge fan of Newcastle United.

The BT Sport pundit famously told Newcastle fans to be thankful for Mike Ashley, invoking the ire of supporters.

While Ferdinand’s stance on the club has seemingly softened since, it’s still strange to see him being so positive about Eddie Howe’s side.

Clearly, it’s hard not to be.

Wolverhampton Wanderers v Manchester United - FA Cup Third Round
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Third in the Premier League and having battered top four rivals Tottenham on Sunday, the train keeps rolling at St James’ Park.

As a result, Ferdinand was full of praise for one player in particular.

Rio Ferdinand praises Jacob Murphy after Tottenham brace

Indeed, the former Manchester United defender picked out a certain Jacob Murphy for praise.

The 28-year-old scored a brace against Spurs in the resounding 6-1 win at St James’ Park, including a brilliant strike from 30 yards.

Murphy was recently a guest on Ferdinand’s ‘Vibe with Five’ Podcast and the latter was effusive in his praise of the former.

“Jacob Murphy, we had him on the show a couple of weeks ago,” said Ferdinand. “Wow. Two goals. Devastating form. Putting chances on a plate.

“His work rate off the ball. He gave the ball away and he chased down like a Ferret he was and they almost scored off the back of it.

“This season. He has been revitalised as a player. He’s been tremendous, so shout out to Jacob Murphy.”

Newcastle United v Tottenham Hotspur - Premier League
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Murphy is becoming a cult-hero

While not always the most convincing of players, Murphy is becoming somewhat of a cult-hero.

His reaction to his second goal against Spurs was fantastic, while his waving off of Duje Caleta-Car in the Carabao Cup semi-final against Southampton will live long in the memory.

Making telling contributions for his boyhood club, Howe has been full of praise for the former Norwich winger.

Having only cost around £12m in 2017, Murphy is now making that deal look a complete bargain.

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