09 Mar 2018


The winners of the Sky Bet EFL Manager of the Month Awards for February are:

Sky Bet Championship: Neil Warnock (Cardiff City)

Cardiff City manager Neil Warnock has been named the Sky Bet Championship Manager of the Month for February.

Not one to panic in spite of Cardiff’s mid-winter dip, Warnock infused his players with renewed belief and cajoled them to garner 16 points from a possible 18, conceding just two goals and re-claiming second place in the process.

Warnock said: “This particular Manager of the Month award is a special one I think: it’s for the Club as a whole, rather than for me alone. Everybody has pulled together.”

"We had some good results in February and if you asked me to pick one moment in particular then I’d probably say the derby win over Bristol City with Kenneth [Zohore] coming on and getting the late goal.”

“When you look at the number of players we’ve had out injured - which is a team in itself - then you have to credit the lads that have come in and given me everything."

George Burley chairs the Sky Bet Manager of the Month judging panel.

He said: “Neil Warnock’s experience of promotion challenges appears to have set Cardiff City up for a late push for the automatic positions.

“The fact they only conceded two goals allowed them to go unbeaten, with important wins against strong sides taking them up to second in the table.”

Sky Sports’ EFL pundit Don Goodman said: “Neil picks up his second Manager of the Month at the business end of the season, and it’s testament to his managerial nous that the club have had a second wind, keeping pace with the pack in an enthralling race for second place.

“You feel like he’s getting the very best out of the squad that he has, with a terrifically drilled defense and enough ability going forward to see off their opponents.”

Sky Bet EFL trader Mikey Mumford said: “Neil Warnock scooped this award in the opening month of the season for his faultless start and for him to receive this award for a second time so late on in the campaign speaks volumes for the job he is overseeing at Cardiff City.

“Neil has made no secret of his affection for the Sky Bet Championship but he could be about to say goodbye to the division with his side now odds on to finish in the automatic promotion places at 4/5.

“The Bluebirds are even shorter 4/7 chances for promotion and an increasing chance Neil adds to his excellent record of seven previous promotions.”


Sky Bet League One: Derek Adams (Plymouth Argyle)

Plymouth manager Derek Adams has been named the Sky Bet League One Manager of the Month for February.

What began as a climb away from the foot of the table in December has blossomed into a full-on tilt at promotion. Maintained his side’s focus superbly, guiding them to five wins out of five with Blackburn and Shrewsbury among their victims.

Adams said: “It’s important that you win awards, as it shows the success you are having at the football club. 

“We try and break records and be successful. Part of that success is picking up the manager of the month award. 

“We are on a fabulous run. It’s a great testament to the players and the staff that we have won it."

George Burley chairs the Sky Bet Manager of the Month judging panel.

He said: “Derek endured a difficult start to his first season in League One but now his team are climbing the table quickly and have regained that winning momentum that saw them promoted last season.

“A perfect month is always pleasing but to beat the top two teams in the process will have filled Derek and Plymouth with plenty of confidence heading into the final months of the campaign.”

Sky Sports’ EFL pundit Don Goodman said: “One of the standout stories of the season will be Plymouth’s remarkable rise from bottom of the table in December to the Play-Off spots by the end of February, whatever happens from this point onwards.

“It was clear that Derek had really bad luck with injuries in the first few months of the season, but to inspire a turnaround like the one they’ve experienced takes a huge level of skill and this award is richly deserved.”

Sky Bet EFL trader Mikey Mumford said: “Plymouth are quite the story this amongst the bookmaking fraternity as Derek Adam’s side continue to defy the odds with their remarkable rise into the play-off places in League One.

“Sky Bet offered 1000/1 for Plymouth to finish in the top six in December when the club sat bottom of the table but the turnaround has been nothing short of extraordinary and leaves Sky Bet facing a potentially large payout.

“The Scot has taken 36 points from 15 games since then, and a flawless February which included wins over Blackburn and Shrewsbury means that price has contracted all the way into 9/4 and it’s only right Derek receives this recognition.”


Sky Bet League Two: John Coleman (Accrington Stanley)

Accrington Stanley manager John Coleman has been named the Sky Bet League Two Manager of the Month for February.

Stanley were fifth when February began, jostling for position in the play-off places. A stellar month of performances under Coleman’s wily guidance later, and 16 points for a possible 18 lifted them into second, within three points of leaders Luton.

Coleman said: “I’m just a small cog in a process that tries to get as many points on the board as we can; we’ve got good staff here and good players.

“If we can win the award next month and the month after, we’ll get where we want to go, which is promoted.

“Hard work has been vital to what we’ve done in February, we didn’t have the best December, and we knew we had to knuckle down and work a bit harder and apply ourselves a bit better, and we did.”

George Burley chairs the Sky Bet Manager of the Month judging panel.

He said: “A packed schedule can either be a blessing or a curse, but John Coleman and his team took full advantage of their great form and are now serious contenders for automatic promotion with 16 points from six games in February.

“An important comeback against Stevenage started the run going as Accrington Stanley remained unbeaten through February.”

Sky Sports’ EFL pundit Don Goodman said: “When the games come thick and fast, you find out a lot about your players, and Coleman’s team of seasoned pros coped brilliantly with the demanding fixture list.

“With a few of the older lads still nursing the painful memories of having promotion snatched from them two seasons ago, Coleman won’t have to search too hard for motivating the squad for the run-in this season.”

Sky Bet EFL trader Mikey Mumford said: “Four wins and a draw in the month for John Coleman have given his Accrington side an outside chance of pipping current leaders Luton to the League Two crown.

“Stanley are 7/1 for the division’s top honours but John will be more concerned with securing promotion and they look well placed to do so after three shut outs in the month and a moral boosting win over fellow promotion hopefuls Coventry.

“John’s achievements are all the more impressive considering Accrington’s small budget in comparison to their divisional rivals and Sky Bet go 2/5 they are plying their trade in the league above next term.”

The Sky Bet Manager of the Month judging panel comprises former Ipswich Town manager George Burley, Sky Sports’ EFL expert Don Goodman; EFL Marketing Director Drew Barrand, League Managers’ Association Director Olaf Dixon and Sky Bet EFL trader Mikey Mumford