Boreham Wood manager Luke Garrard win the Vanarama National League Manager of the Month award for December
Luke Garrard has celebrated 2021 by making history with Boreham Wood – now he’s been named the Vanarama National League’s Manager of the Month for December too.
Garrard’s Wood side rounded off a challenging 2020 with a 100 per cent record in the final month – and took some pretty big scalps along the way.
They started with a 2-1 victory at Hartlepool United and then repeated the feat at Notts County before beating Aldershot Town 3-2.
Garrard begun 2021 by steering Wood into the third round of the FA Cup for the first time in their history but sadly they were edged out 2-0 by Championship side Millwall on Saturday.
One thing’s for sure, however, Wood are clearly on the up and there’ll be plenty of big games for come for Garrard and his ambitious Hertfordshire outfit.
Another team who enjoyed a positive December were FC Halifax Town, who continued their rise from the lower reaches into the play-off places.
Talisman Luke Summerfield was a big reason behind that upturn in form, earning the experienced midfielder the Player of the Month award.
Summerfield put in a number of composed and competitive displays for the Shaymen, most notably in a man-of-the-match display in the televised game at Weymouth.
The Volunteer Award for December went to Altrincham kit man Steve Foster.
Steve is very much part of the team at Moss Lane, looking after three different kits, the teams’ matchday needs, doing the laundry and rushing out to buy refreshments – and all without taking a penny from the club.
VANARAMA NATIONAL LEAGUE NORTH
The Saints are marching on under Kevin Wilkin – and the Brackley Town boss has been duly rewarded for his efforts.
Wilkin has been named Vanarama National League North Manager of the Month for December after ending 2020 on the crest of a wave.
Brackley started the month with a good point at Leamington, before wins over Guiseley, Spennymoor Town and Blyth Spartans.
They then ended the month with a dramatic win over league leaders Gloucester City to set them up perfectly for a promotion push in 2021.
Another side beginning to motor are Boston United – and a lot of that is down to the form of goalkeeper Ross Fitzsimons.
The 26-year-old has been in fine form between the posts, culminating in five clean sheets throughout December, a man-of-the-match performance against Chester and two penalty shootout saves in an FA Trophy victory over AFC Fylde.
The Volunteer of the Month Award went to Mim Mitchell, who is revelling in watching her beloved Gloucester City play in her home city after more than a decade in exile.
Mim has had her eyes fixed on the Tigers for over 70 years and continues to provide hospitality to all visitors, baking delicious cakes for every home match.
Her enthusiasm for the club makes her the perfect candidate for the monthly award – she will no doubt celebrate with a well-deserved cuppa and a Victoria sponge!
NATIONAL LEAGUE SOUTH
Oxford City had sent out warning signs in November, including a famous FA Cup triumph over League One side Northampton Town.
But last month they flexed their muscle in the league as manager David Oldfield built on those foundations to land the Vanarama National League South Manager of the Month award for December.
It started with a stunning 4-1 win at surprise title contenders Hungerford Town, then came a battling draw with leaders St Albans City which was followed by a 1-0 success at home to Dulwich Hamlet.
City then won 2-0 at Welling United in the FA Trophy to give Oldfield, the former Manchester City striker, a solid platform to build on for 2021.
Havant & Waterlooville fans also hope this could be their year and with reenergised striker Tommy Wright recapturing his love for the game after taking a break from the game, the Hawks have plenty to be excited about.
Wright, 24, claimed the Player of the Year award after scoring a fine hat-trick as the Hawks humbled Chelmsford City and then netted two more in a 3-0 win at Ebbsfleet before finishing with an FA Trophy goal against Bracknell Town.
Ebbsfleet United superfan John Snow claimed the South’s Volunteer Award.
Snow has been lending a hand at Stonebridge Road for many years but has gone a step beyond this year, painting the entire pitch perimeter walls adding yellow lines onto the terraces.
John also removed trees and weed growth from the around the concourse to prevent damage to the stands and the terraces. A worthy recipient indeed.