Shelvey and Townsend joined Newcastle from Swansea City and Tottenham Hotspur respectively during the January transfer window.
They have been tasked with helping the Magpies beat the drop this term and Shelvey feels his new team-mate has the ability to make a real difference at St. James’ Park.
"Yes, he is a great signing for the club, England international, all you have to do is give him the ball and let him do what he has got to do – he is so direct with the ball," Shelvey said.
Townsend barely featured at White Hart Lane under Mauricio Pochettino’s guidance, prompting plenty of speculation over his future long before he finally made the switch to Newcastle.
His move to the North East will certainly aid his England chances this summer but, more importantly for Newcastle, his presence should give the club much-needed quality in wide areas.
Steve McClaren has been backed heavily as Newcastle boss during his short tenure yet the club have disappointed and currently find themselves in the bottom three on goal difference.
Townsend, 24, has played three games for the Magpies since joining the club and opened his account during the recent 5-1 defeat at Chelsea - the only positive in an otherwise horrific afternoon.
There is plenty of ability within Newcastle’s ranks but, unless they find a good run of form soon, they could find themselves in real danger of going down with arguably their best squad in years.