No way, Jose! It’s got to be Cott for me...

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE ONE - Gra­ham West­ley

WHEN my League Man­agers As­so­ci­a­tion vot­ing pa­per for the Manager of the Year landed on my door­mat this week, I had a fairly sim­ple job to fill it out.

No­body can knock the job that Jose Mour­inho has done at Chelsea, where he will pro­duce an­other League ti­tle. But, for me, that does not com­pare to the jobs that three English man­agers have done lower down the foot­balling lad­der.


In third place, I voted for Wy­combe’s Gareth Ainsworth. To take a team that only sur­vived in the League on the fi­nal day of last sea­son and put them into a po­si­tion where they have a chance to win pro­mo­tion to League One on this year’s fi­nal day is a mon­u­men­tal achieve­ment.

He has had to work very smartly to achieve that with the re­sources he has at his dis­posal and he has been out­stand­ing.

In sec­ond place, I can­not ig­nore that Ed­die Howe has de­liv­ered Bournemouth to the very edge of the Pre­mier League.

I don’t care whether he gets there or not, just to go so close with such a small club rel­a­tive to their com­peti­tors is an ex­traor­di­nar­ily dif­fi­cult task.

Some say that he has had great fi­nan­cial back­ing, and he may have done. But you still need to sign the right play­ers and it was him who signed Cal­lum Wil­son when oth­ers hes­i­tated. So fair play to him for one hell of a job.

At the top of my tree is Steve Cot­ter­ill for the sen­sa­tional job that he has done with Bris­tol City.

I was amongst the un­lucky ones in the sense that he came and took Luke Free­man from me at the end of last sea­son! But what a job Steve has pro­duced.

A League One and Johnstone’s Paint Tro­phy dou­ble takes some do­ing and they did the job with plenty of room to spare. Even big clubs at their level with big bud­gets have to do lots right to suc­ceed. And the job at Bris­tol City has been done al­most fault­lessly. Bril­liant job, Steve.

So it is votes to three English man­agers for me. It is a thumbs

PIC­TURE: Ac­tion Images

CHAM­PAGNE MO­MENT: Bris­tol City boss Steve Cot­ter­ill is soaked af­ter his side’s JPT suc­cess

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