Fleetwood Town head coach Uwe Rosler is on the shortlist for the Sky Bet EFL League One manager of the month award after his side completed an unbeaten December.
Despite injuries to key players, like midfielders Kyle Dempsey and Jimmy Ryan, Town picked up eight points from four league matches last month.
Fleetwood first beat Walsall 2-1 in a match sandwiched between their FA Cup second round ties against Shrewsbury – Town won the replay 3-2.
The Cod Army roared on to a 1-1 draw at Swindon and a 0-0 Highbury draw with Bury – the only league match in which they have failed to score all season – before beating Oldham 1-0 on the final day of 2016.
Town have since started the New Year with another 1-0 win at Shrewsbury, which lifted them to sixth place and extended their unbeaten run to 11.
Rosler faces stiff competition for the award, particularly from table-topping Sheffield United boss Chris Wilder and from Rochdale’s Keith Hill, whose teams both won all of their four League One games last month.
Completing the shortlist is Southend boss Phil Brown, who has also been hampered by injuries but still saw his Shrimpers side record three league wins and a draw from four December clashes, leaving them just a point behind Town in seventh place.
The winner will be announced on Friday.
Rosler was happy to reach the 40 points after taking seven from three tight games over the festive season against Bury, Oldham and Shrewsbury, who are all fighting for their lives at the wrong end of the table.
He said: “I said to the players (after Shrewsbury) that if we want to do something this season these are the places you have to go and get something.Those three points make me really happy.”
The Shrewsbury game was Town’s third in eight days since Christmas, and only two goals were scored in all three.
That didn’t surprise Rosler, who added: “I think at this time of the year you see many 0-0s, 1-1s, 1-0s. Players are going into games only being 75-80 per cent capable of producing physically and mentally. I am absolutely delighted.”
Despite being in the play-off zone, Rosler’s first priority remains League One safety.
He said: “Ten more points and we are more or less safe, and then we are looking upwards.”