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Monthly Awards

Dean Smith named Sky Bet League 1 Manager of the Month

4 September 2015

Walsall boss Dean Smith has been named the Sky Bet League 1 Manager of the Month for August.

Walsall are at the top of Sky Bet League 1 for the first time in a decade, with Smith’s brand of attacking football proving effective, and helping the team garner 13 points from a possible 15 in August. The highlight of the month was a 4-0 win at Blackpool.

Smith said: “It’s really pleasing but it’s not just for me, it’s for the whole team. The players have to go out there and perform and get the results.

“And for the staff behind me – this is for all of them as well. It’s not just an individual accolade, because you can’t get them without the rest of the team working well together.

“It’s really pleasing and it just shows that we’re doing well at the moment.”

George Burley, who chairs the Sky Bet Manager of the Month judging panel, said: “To take your team to the top of the league for the first time in a decade is certainly no mean feat.

“Walsall collected 13 points from a possible 15 and Dean must have felt completely elated going to Blackpool and winning 4-0 in the last game of the month.”

Sky Sports’ Football League pundit Don Goodman said: “Dean couldn’t have asked for any more than an unbeaten August and progression to the third round of the Capital One Cup against Championship leaders Brighton.

“The 4-0 demolition job away at Blackpool showed that this is a team to be reckoned with in the hunt for promotion to the Championship this season.”

Sky Bet Football Trading Manager Paul Lowery said: “Not many people could have predicted the start that Walsall have made to the new season.

“Four wins from their first five games and one of the meanest defences in the league sees them sitting above the much fancied Sheffield United at the summit of Sky Bet League 1."

The Sky Bet Manager of the Month judging panel comprises former Ipswich Town boss George Burley, Sky Sports’ Football League expert Don Goodman; Football League Chief Operating Officer Andy Williamson; League Managers’ Association Director Olaf Dixon and Sky Bet Football Trading Manager Paul Lowery.

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