The votes are in: Liverpool’s Danny Sturridge is the Premier League Player of the Month for February, while Sam Allardyce, boss of West Ham United, is the Manager of the Month.
Manuel Pellegrini had snapped up two consecutive awards for December and January, but after his Manchester City side spent February losing to Chelsea, failing to score in a draw with lowly Norwich City, and losing the first leg of their Champions League tie with Barcelona, it was surely time for someone else to step up – particularly after Pellegrini showed such bizarre devotion to defender Martín Demichelis, even using him in central midfield against Chelsea.
And Allardyce deserves recognition. After a dismal January saw the Irons, normally so solid in defense, knocked out of the FA Cup in a 5-0 loss to Championship side Nottingham Forest, only to lose 8-0 over two legs to Manchester City in the League Cup, February brought a revival to East London. West Ham picked up twelve points from four matches, beating Swansea, Aston Villa, Norwich and Southampton. The side conceded just one goal in February while scoring nine, and now sit tenth in the table.
Sturridge, meanwhile, has managed to steal a few headlines away from fellow forward Luis Suárez over the past month. Liverpool are now second in the table, seven points from Chelsea but with a game in hand. The Reds were undefeated in league play in February, dropping points only in a draw with West Brom, and scored thirteen goals, including five in the win over Arsenal. Sturridge, who has eighteen league goals thus far, picked up five last month.