By Matthew Beedle
Rafa Benitez was named Sky Bet Championship manager of the month after his Newcastle side won all of their fixtures in October.
The Spaniard has spent a mouth-watering sum of money bringing players, in excess of £100 million over the transfer periods, and has his critics asking whether resources are linked to success. Benitez told the Chronicle that he doesn’t think this is the case but that it shows the hard work the club and his staff are putting in.
Benitez beat Leeds manager Garry Monk and Preston boss Simon Grayson, two candidates who have spent far less on their roster but are finding ways to win, despite vastly lower paid players.
Preston spent just £225,000 on bringing Ben Pringle to the club this season, with the rest of their signings being loans and free agents.
Grayson’s side sit 11th and three points off the play-offs, losing just once during October, beating Aston Villa and Norwich in the process.
The former Leeds and Blackpool manager is certainly getting the best out of his squad of players, causing some to ask whether he should have won the months’ award over Benitez.
Garry Monk has turned the fortunes of Leeds around, only falling once during of the month at the hands of Derby at the iPro.
The former Swansea boss was on the verge of the sack at the end of September following a defeat to Huddersfield. The Whites have climbed from 22nd to 6th, sitting in the play offs in a remarkable turnaround.
Although the award isn’t a big deal to some, a similar scenario occurred the previous month when Norwich manager Alex Neil won the September award.
Neil beat Reading’s Jaap Stam to the award, despite his side losing just once in what has been a surprising start for the Royals. Reading fans will know that Neil spent a staggering £8 million on Alex Pritchard alone.