EPL: Salah, Hughton Win EA Sports Player, Manager Of The Month Awards
Liverpool and Egypt’s Mohamed Salah, alongside Brighton and Hove Albion manager Chris Hughton have been named the EA SPORTS Player and Manager of the Month for February.
Salah claims the award for the second time this season after being involved in a month-high six goals, four scored, two assisted.
His impressive performances helped Liverpool to two wins and a draw, strengthening their grip on the top four in the Premier League. “The players make it easier and the boss also makes it easier for me,” Salah said.
“It’s nice to win it again especially because it’s the Player of the Month of the Premier League, so that’s something good. I say always try to help reach the three points and to be in a better position.”
Salah received the most combined votes from a panel of experts, Premier League captains and fans to claim the award ahead of six other nominees: Sergio Aguero, Mousa Dembele, Pascal Gross, Eden Hazard, Glenn Murray and Xherdan Shaqiri.
On his own part, Hughton claimed the Manager of the Month award for the first time in his career and becomes the first black coach to win it. The 59-year-old steered the Seagulls away from relegation danger in their debut season in the top flight by taking seven points from three games throughout February.
A victory over West Ham was followed by a draw away to Stoke City before an excellent month was rounded off with a dominant win over Swansea City at the Amex Stadium.
Hughton, who has taken charge of 121 Premier League games across spells with Newcastle, Norwich City and Brighton, says the players, coaches and medical staff all deserve credit for the award.
“It’s a wonderful achievement for the club and certainly for a group of players that have improved as the season has gone on and knowing that we’ve still got a lot of work to do,” Hughton said.
“I have wonderful medical staff and coaching staff. We’re thankful to a lot of people but, of course, it’s the players, the players have enjoyed being in this division so far and are desperate to make sure that we stay there.”
The month of February did not only see Brighton thrive in the Premier League as they also qualified for the FA Cup quarter-finals by beating Coventry City. In fact, they are unbeaten in seven games across all competitions.
Their March could not have got off to a better start either. They beat Arsenal 2-1 at home to vault into the top half of the table and now sit seven points clear of the relegation zone with 34 points from 29 games.
They could further cement their position in the top half, and the division, with a win over Everton at Goodison Park on Saturday, which would also keep Hughton in contention for the March award.
Meanwhile, an FA Cup quarter-final tie between Brighton and Manchester United follows later this month.