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.
“But John will be more concerned with securing promotion and they look well placed to do so after three shutouts in the month and a morale-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.”
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.