ALAN Pardew hailed his players for Newcastle United’s “turnaround” – then challenged them to make it four in a row.
Pardew’s side claimed a third successive victory at the weekend.
And the 2-1 home win over Norwich City lifted the club into ninth place in the Premier League.
Pardew had been under pressure after early-season defeats to Hull City and Everton – and the Wear-Tyne derby loss to Sunderland.
But Pardew’s players are now looking up the table, with United just two points off fourth place.
Newcastle will take on West Bromwich Albion at St James’s Park on Saturday looking to climb further up the table.
“The three wins have been a huge turnaround for us as a group,” Pardew told SportMail.
“We can look forward to West Brom with confidence.
“It really is about where we are – eighth. Let’s say ‘well done’ to the guys and look forward to West Brom. The last three games have been great for us.
“We played very well and now we have confidence. We have to continue with that.”
Pardew was looking for at least four points, and preferably six, from the two-game home sequence.
Having already claimed three, Pardew’s looking for another three-point haul from the visit of the Baggies.
“I said if we could get four, or maybe six, points out of these two games it would be very important,” he said.
“When you beat Chelsea and win at Spurs, you must win again. Forget about how we played or how it ended, the most important thing – the agenda in that dressing room – was to win, and we did.”
Meanwhile, Pardew feels there’s a “maturity” about Cheik Tiote’s performances this season.
Tiote – who struggled for form last season – impressed as stand-in captain in the absence of Fabricio Coloccini.
Best known for his tough tackling, the Ivory Coast midfielder was disciplined and diligent wearing the skipper’s armband.
And Pardew feels Tiote, often wasteful in possession last term, is showing the kind of form for United that he displayed when the club finished fifth in the Premier League and qualified for the Europa League two seasons ago.
“I think he’s been strong all year,” Pardew said.
“But there was a maturity about him when he took the armband that we haven’t seen in the past.
“Hopefully, he’ll carry that forward whether he’s got the armband or not.
“He’s playing really well – as good as he did two seasons ago when we finished fifth.
“He was a big part of that. That, really, is good news for us.”
Tiote – who handed the armband back to fit-again Coloccini before Saturday’s home game – has also cleaned up his disciplinary record, having only been booked twice so far this season.