Though they are still some way off being mathematically safe, Newcastle appear to have given their Premier League survival hopes a major lift in recent times with a run that has seen the Magpies win two and draw three of their last six games.
Several players appear to have stepped up in that time, but one of the players who has been most impressive during that run is Jamaal Lascelles, who has, once again, come to the fore as a leader.
The 24-year-old has helped the side to clean sheets against Manchester United and Southampton, and scored in the draw with Burnley on transfer deadline day when this much more promising run began.
Lascelles' form should definitely give Benitez something to smile about as it is coming at exactly the right time for Newcastle to ensure that they remain in the top flight next season.
But in other ways, the centre-back's upturn in form could have come at possibly the worst time.
The Chronicle reported last month that the £35,000-a-week star had been attracting attention from the likes of Liverpool, Everton, Arsenal and Chelsea in recent times, and with the summer just emerging over the horizon, Lascelles' form may do little for Newcastle's chances of keeping him at St James' Park.
If he tails off again before the campaign concludes, he may go a little more under the radar amongst the scouts that are currently looking at him, but if he continues to impress and spearhead the Magpies' charge away from the bottom three, then that may ensure that the club have more calls to answer in the summer.