Yoan Gouffran and DeAndre Yedlin fired Newcastle United up to second place in the Championship tonight.
Gouffran and Yedlin both scored in a 2-0 win over Derby County at the iPro Stadium.
It was Gouffran's first strike since January last and Yedlin's first for the club he joined last month.
Newcastle, backed by 3,200 vociferous fans at Derby, are level on points with third-placed Barnsley, who beat Preston North End 2-1 thanks to a stunning goal from on-loan United forward Adam Armstrong.
Derby made the better start, and had a penalty call waved away by referee Darren Bond – who replaced injured official James Linington before kick-off – in the 12th minute when Marcus Olsson went down under a challenge from Vurnon Anita.
Newcastle's breakthrough came in the 20th minute after a Dwight Gayle shot was deflected away for a corner.
Jonjo Shelvey delivered a deep ball to Gouffran at the far post, and the forward struck a fine volley into the far corner of the net.
Derby went on to dominate the ball, but United kept their shape and the home side struggled to turn their possession into clearcut chances before the half-time break.
Nigel Pearson's side pressed and probed in the second half, and goalkeeper Matz Sels beat away a fierce shot from Craig Bryson in the 68th minute. Ikechi Anya put a follow-up effort on to the crossbar.
But chances for Derby were few and far between. United, organised and disciplined, were content to sit back and let their opponents have the ball in certain areas.
Benitez threw on Yedlin and Ayoze Perez in the second half, and Isaac Hayden, surprisingly left out of the starting XI, was a late substitute.
Newcastle applied some late pressure to a flagging Derby, and Yedlin netted in injury time to make sure of the points.
United take on Queens Park Rangers at Loftus Road on Tuesday night.
DERBY COUNTY: Carson, Christie, Bryson, Shackell (Bent, 88), Keogh, Russell, Anya (Ince, 78), Wilson (Blackman, 65), Hughes, Vydra, Olsson. Subs not used: Mitchell, Pearce, Butterfield, Johnson.
NEWCASTLE UNITED: Sels; Anita, Mbemba, Lascelles, Dummett; Shelvey, Colback; Ritchie, Diame (Hayden, 88), Gouffran (Yedlin73); Gayle (Perez, 76). Subs not used: Darlow, Lazaar, Clark, Mitrovic.
Goals: Gouffran 20, Yedlin
Bookings: Shelvey 25, Gouffran 60
Referee: Darren Bond (Lancashire)