Aston Villa manager Steve Bruce and striker Scott Hogan have been nominated for the Championship’s Manager and Player of the Month awards, respectfully.
Villa have taken a maximum amount of points in January, including a 5-0 demolishing of promotion rivals Bristol City on New Years Day. Villa’s extraordinary form over January has seen them move up to third place in the table, just a point behind second-placed Derby County. Villa are now right amongst the chase for automatic promotion ,with some labelling them favourites to finish second behind runaway leaders Wolves.
In the month of January, striker Hogan has started to show his real quality after initially struggling after his move from Brentford last year. The striker has scored four goals in four games, including a brace in Villa’s 3-1 win at home to Barnsley. Hogan has carried his January form into February, netting once against Burton Albion in Villa’s 3-2 win.
Bruce has steered the club through what was undoubtedly a rough December with the manager himself saying “We’re only one week away from crisis” after Villa’s 2-1 boxing day loss to Brentford.
Bruce came under a lot of criticism with many fans calling for his head after the poor Christmas period but he has come through the other end with six wins in a row, and the possibility of making it seven wins from seven for Villa the first time since Graham Taylor in the 1989/90 season.