Results this weekend have meant Newcastle United have moved three points clear of the relegation zone.

The Magpies drew 2-2 with Tottenham Hotspur, with Fulham falling to a 3-1 defeat to Aston Villa.

Newcastle United v Tottenham Hotspur - Premier League
Newcastle United (Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/Getty Images)

In the end at St. James’ Park on Saturday, it was a good result against Jose Mourinho’s side, who might have built on their 2-1 lead in the game.

But Steve Bruce’s side showed some fight and got a deserved point after Joe Willock popped up with a late equaliser.

Bruce had made some changes to his side following the shocking defeat to Brighton before the international break.

Matt Ritchie (Photo by Charlotte Wilson/Offside/Offside via Getty Images)

And two players had particularly good games against Spurs.

Jacob Murphy (£12 million signing, BBC Sport) came in at right wing-back and Matt Ritchie (also a £12 million signing, BBC Sport) was starting his first Premier League game since January 3.

He was also making his first appearance since the post-Wolverhampton Wanderers spat with Bruce that became very public indeed.

 

Both offered good outlets, and Ritchie’s passion appeared to rub off on his teammates.

Murphy and Ritchie must keep their places

Murphy and Ritchie need to be on the pitch as often as possible between now and the end of the season.

They both showed desire and commitment against Spurs and those things will be crucial in the run-in.

Newcastle United v Tottenham Hotspur - Premier League
Jacob Murphy (Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/Getty Images)

It’s clear they care about the cause, something not evident in everyone, and that kind of mentality will hopefully spread to other players in games going forwards.

In addition to these two playing, Callum Wilson is to come back very soon, and Allan Saint-Maximin and Miguel Almiron are also proven game-changers.

Newcastle need not take it to the wire if Bruce counts on the right people.

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