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09 Nov 2018

SKY BET EFL MANAGER OF THE MONTH AWARDS: OCTOBER 2018

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

Sky Bet Championship: Steve McClaren (Queens Park Rangers)

Queens Park Rangers manager Steve McClaren has been named the Sky Bet Championship Manager of the Month for October.

The scrutiny was sharp in late summer after a poor start, but McClaren quietly trusted his methods and his players to steer Rangers into the top half with an October haul of 13 points from five unbeaten games.

McClaren said: “I have got to say the response of the players has been good, but the main factor we’ve had such a good October was the staff I have got around me.

“It is all about people, it is all about players, it is all about staff and the staff have been absolutely magnificent.

“We could have crumbled after four games, but they stuck together, we all did. Matty Gardiner, John Eustace, Gavin Ward, the Sports Science team behind, the medics who are keeping the players fit and everybody at this training ground, everybody at the stadium, even the supporters are sticking together.”

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

He said: “QPR have shown the importance of keeping faith in the manager and, after a dreadful start to the season, they have now pushed themselves into the top half of the table.

“Steve made some astute loan signings just before the window closed and that helped him have an unbeaten run of games in October, collecting 13 points along the way.”

Sky Sports’ EFL pundit Don Goodman said: “For Steve McClaren, the QPR job comes not only as a chance to rebuilt the club, to but also to rebuilt his reputation after several disappointingly short stints at English clubs.

“He’ll be hoping there’s many more months like October, where his side utilised defensive solidity, with the only goal they conceded all month, against Derby, denying them a perfect record.”

Sky Bet EFL trader Ivor Davies said: “After a slow start to the season Steve McClaren has turned things around at Loftus Road. The Hoops managed to win four games and draw the other in October as QPR shot up the Championship table.

“They will be looking up and not down now as they are 18/1 for promotion from 50/1 at the start of the month and are out to 33/1 to be relegated from 9/2 at the start of the month.”

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Sky Bet League One: Mark Robins (Coventry City)

Coventry City manager Mark Robins has been named the Sky Bet League One Manager of the Month for October. 

His side ended the month with five successive league wins, making light of the transition from League Two following promotion.

Impressively, his side scored eight goals in winning away at Charlton, Southend and Bradford.

Robins said: “We played some good football early on without getting the results that we deserved to get, but I think that everybody has worked really, really hard behind the scenes and the players have been brilliant this month. 

“It is a tough division and difficult to get results in, but we have managed to do that over the last month or so. Hopefully we can kick on and contribute some more good performances because I think some of the football they are playing really entertaining.”

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

He said: “Mark has got Coventry City quickly adjusted to playing in a league above and they won all five of their last matches in October.

“These included great away wins against Charlton, Southend and Bradford which shows they will be likely contenders for another promotion this season.”

Sky Sports’ EFL pundit Don Goodman said: “After gaining promotion last season, Mark Robins would have been after much more than simply surviving in League One this time around.

“Five straight wins for the first time in 20 years has the Sky Blues looking up the table and thriving at this level.”

Sky Bet EFL trader Ivor Davies said: “Mark Robins’ Coventry team won five on the bounce in October to propel themselves up to eight place in the table.

“The Sky Blues are now firmly in Play-Off contention and are 9/1 for back to back promotions. Any relegation worries have been eased with them now priced at 40/1 to go back down to League Two.”

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Sky Bet League Two: Paul Tisdale (MK Dons)

MK Dons manager Paul Tisdale has been named the Sky Bet League Two Manager of the Month for October.

It took him 10 years at Exeter to be named Manager of the Month. He has managed it in three months at MK after a near-perfect October in which his side collected 16 points from a possible 18, conceding just two goals.

Tisdale said: “Coming into a new club you always hope to hit the ground running and get some results, so we have done that and I am looking forward to the season ahead.

“Things are going really nicely, but I want to be very careful not to get too carried away.

“It is early days, I have certainly concentrated on the process of our performances, the results as nice as they are a product of that and there is a lot more work still to do, so forgive me but I am tempering all our excitement with knowing that it is only November and we have got a lot of games to go.

“But I’m very pleased with how it has gone so far and the way I have been welcomed into the club, there are lots of very good people here and it is a very nice place to be and I am very happy so far with the work that we have done.”

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

He said: “After ten successful years at Exeter, Paul has shown in just three months at MK Dons what an excellent manager he is.

“They had a near perfect October collecting 16 points from a possible 18 while conceding just two goals.”

Sky Sports’ EFL pundit Don Goodman said: “Many wondered how Paul Tisdale would cope in his first new role in over a decade, but he has taken barely any time to transmit his message onto his players.

“In October, an increase in clean sheets allowed them to turn draws into victories and propelled them up the table, hot on Lincoln’s heels.”

Sky Bet EFL trader Ivor Davies said: “Former Exeter boss Paul Tisdale guided his MK Dons side to five wins and a draw in October.

“The Dons now sit in second position and are all set to mount a serious title challenge.

“They are now 9/4 second favourites to win the Sky Bet League Two crown and as short as 4/11 for promotion.”

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 Ivor Davies.