Walsall boss Jon Whitney nominated for League One Manager of the Month award
Walsall boss Jon Whitney is a surprise nominee for the November Manager of the Month award.
The 46-year-old has come in for strong criticism from Saddlers fans for what has so far proved an inconsistent 2017/18 campaign.
That pressure intensified further when Walsall were knocked out of the FA Cup by Newport County at the start of November.
But it's the Saddlers response to that game that has impressed judges at the Football League who dish out the monthly honours.
As well as beating Shrewsbury in the Checkatrade Trophy, Whitney's men also secured back-to-back wins over Fleetwood and AFC Wimbledon in League One.
And while they did slip to a 1-0 loss against Gillingham in the month, a statement from the Football League confirmed the judges had been impressed with how the Saddlers had responded to that loss in South Wales.
"Calling out your players in public tests the bond between a manager and his players," it said.
"Whitney trusted his team to respond to their recent slide in the right way and cajoled them to turn their form around with six points from three games."
Whitney has been nominated for the November award alongside Graham Alexander at Scunthorpe with the Iron having won all four of their league matches in the month.
Blackburn's ex-Albion manager Tony Mowbray has been shortlisted after his team also won four matches in the division, scoring 13 goals in the process.
While former Wolves boss Kenny Jacket, who is now in charge of Portsmouth, is the final nominee.
The 55-year-old agreed a new deal to remain in charge at Fratton Park until 2021 last month. He also won three out of four matches in League One.
Scunthorpe's Matt Gilks, Blackburn's Charlie Mulgrew, Wigan's Max Power and Oxford's Wes Thomas are the men that has been shortlisted for the November Player of the Month award.
The winners of the awards, which are sponsored by Sky Bet, will be announced on Friday.
Included on the judging on the panel is former Albion, Wolves and Walsall striker Don Goodman as well as ex-Ipswich boss George Burley.