Crystal Palace are celebrating a double dose of recognition after Dougie Freedman and Glenn Murray picked up the nPower 'Championship Manager' and 'Player of the Month' awards for September 2012.
Following four straight defeats in August, Crystal Palace finished September and started October like a team possessed! Four wins and a draw in September saw The Eagles' gaffer Dougie Freedman win the 'Manager of the Month' award, as his side topped the form charts for the month of September. Freedman led the Eagles to impressive wins away at Charlton and Bolton and recorded home successes against Sheffield Wednesday and Cardiff, whilst drawing with Nottingham Forest. Freedman beat Cardiff's Malkay Mackay and Leicester's Nigel Pearson to win the award.
In summary Freedman told cpfc.co.uk: "It's a great personal achievement for myself, but a lot of credit has got to go to the whole club. We've come together after a very difficult start to the season, and regrouped and got a few players in the door and since then the results have turned."
A driving force behind this fine run was the clinical form of Glenn Murray. The ex-Rochdale striker bagged six goals in September, four of them slotted calmly home from the penalty spot, and is a deserving winner of the 'Player of the Month' award.
Murray beat off competition from Brighton's Bruno Saltor and Leicester's Wes Morgan. to win the award. With more support up front this season from wingers Wilfried Zaha and Yannick Bolasie, Murray's natural link-up play and finishing had a crucial impact in his September six goal tally.
On his award, Glenn said: "I’m really pleased, obviously we’ve had a really great month as a team so it’s very nice to be awarded. The highlight of the month for me would be scoring the winner against Bolton, even though it was a penalty it was an important goal for us."
Freedman added: "It’s good for Glenn and he fully deserves it As an ex-centre forward I know it’s a very difficult job he does. He’s led the line well and played very smart, and he’s been working on his game a lot at the training ground, so he fully deserves all the credit he gets right now."
The two awards are determined by two separate expert panels. The 'Manager of the Month' award is decided by former Charlton Athletic manager Alan Curbishley, Football League chief operating officer Andy Williamson, League Managers Association deputy CEO Olaf Dixon and npower sponsorship manager Emma Collins. The 'Player of the Month' panel sees Emma Collins joined by Wolves legend Don Goodman, BBC Sport’s Mark Clemmit and The Football League’s head of communications, John Nagle.
Npower sponsorship Manager Emma Collins added: "It’s great to see a young manager doing so well, so we’re delighted to be giving the npower Football League Championship 'Manager of the Month' award to Dougie. Crystal Palace’s form in September was the best in the league, so it was one of our easier decisions."
Since September Crystal Palace have continued there good form by winning at Wolves and beating Burnley 4-3 in a thriller at Selhurst Park last Saturday.