The Magpies leapfrog Chelsea into third after a Demba Ba hat-trick sealed an impressive away win, and their manager insists his side are getting the rewards they deserveNewcastle United manager Alan Pardew was delighted with his side after recording a 3-1 victory against Stoke City at the Britannia Stadium.
A perfect hat-trick from Senegalese striker Demba Ba was enough to take the Magpies into third in the league, continuing their unbeaten start to the season, and the former West Ham boss reserved special praise for his defence.
"On a pitch like this, you're going to get a lot of balls in your box and you have to defend them, and we did as a team tonight. It's tremendous spirit," Pardew told Sky Sports.
"I thought both penalties were a bit soft actually but when the ball keeps going in there it's tough decisions for the referee, everyone's pushing and barging.
"I was a little bit disappointed [in the] second half," he continued, "we didn't control the game as we should have, but the resilience of the team showed another side to us. We don't get 22 points without having different sides to our game."
Stoke were unbeaten at home this season before Monday night's defeat, and Pardew believes it epitomises how far Newcastle have come on since the start of the season.
"All the big teams have come here and no-one's won, so it just goes to show how good they are at what they do," the Newcastle boss continued.
"They had a strong wind behind them second half which helped them, but they're a very, very good side and a side we've got to make sure we beat at home if we can, because they're a top team and will finish in the top ten."
Hat-trick hero Demba Ba failed a medical at Stoke in January before moving to West Ham. After his contract ran out he joined the Magpies on a free transfer, and after a slow start that involved fasting for the Muslim festival of Ramadan, has gone on to score eight goals in ten games for the club.
His boss added: "Demba's played like that all year, he's been brilliant for us. He's a great player, he doesn't miss a day's training. I knew of him because of my connections at West Ham, and [was] very, very confident to bring him here."