Whittingham faces manager of the month battle

Guy Whittingham. Picture: Joe Pepler
Guy Whittingham. Picture: Joe Pepler

Eddie Howe and Russell Slade are the chief rivals as Guy Whittingham seeks to cap a stunning March with the League One manager of the month award.

Pompey finished joint-fourth in the form table last month in a remarkable transformation of fortunes.

A return of three wins, two draws and a loss has not only seen the Blues climb off the bottom of the table but increase calls for Whittingham to be given the job full-time.

With March’s manager of the month currently under discussion, his name will inevitably be considered.

Only Leyton Orient, Bournemouth and Brentford have picked up more points than Pompey during that period.

However, Orient played one match more (seven) with their record of 14 points.

Bournemouth are second, with four wins and two defeats in six games.

Third are Brentford, with the same amount of victories and losses, although they have an inferior goal difference.

Next come Pompey, who are one of three clubs with 11-point hauls – although MK Dons have played one more game than Whittingham’s side.

The other is Doncaster, whose goal difference is less than the Blues.

The manager of the month for March is expected to be officially announced towards the end of the week.

What also favours Whittingham is the fact Pompey had gone 23 matches without a win before his troops defeated Crewe 2-1 on March 2.

Since then their results have been among the best in League One.

The run included a 1-1 draw at leaders Doncaster on March 16 and a 1-1 draw at Preston to finish the month.

They then beat Tranmere 1-0 on April 1, but it was too late to be considered.