Who should be the Premier League's manager of the month?

Swansea City, Chelsea, Aston Villa and Stoke City coaches all feature.

August was a huge month for all Premier League clubs as England’s top division returned to action.

It’s always important to get off to a good start because it releases the pressure over a squad, as they get closer to a peak state of match fitness and sharpness.

There are four candidates for the August manager of the month award in the Premier League. We’ve assessed each and given our nomination for the award.

Garry Monk (Swansea City)

Ask any Swansea fan if they thought their side would be joint top of the league with Chelsea and you’ll be hard pushed to find any who say yes.

Swansea started with a terrific win away at Manchester United in a match that many expected them to lose and they have backed that up with wins against Burnley and West Brom.

Perhaps the most impressive thing about this Swans team is their defence, as they have secured nine points while conceding just a single goal.

Jose Mourinho (Chelsea)

Chelsea’s start isn’t so much of a surprise as Jose Mourinho’s summer signings click into action.

While Chelsea’s title rivals have dropped points, Mourinho has overseen a perfect start to the campaign with wins against Burnley, Leicester City and Everton.

His team scored six times in the win against Everton and the midfield and attacking talent the Blues have has been impressive. Chelsea are well placed to back up their favourites tag for the Premier League title.

Paul Lambert (Aston Villa)

Aston Villa started last season in decent form and Paul Lambert’s men have started this season in decent form. The trick now is to find the consistency which will keep Aston Villa in the top half of the table.

Villa have conceded just one goal this season and have clearly been working hard on their defence, which has allowed them to take narrow wins away at Stoke City and at home against Hull.

Villa’s gritty performances have been really impressive this season, they are well backed and Lambert deserves credit for Fabian Delph getting into the England setup.

September looks to be a much tougher challenge.

Mark Hughes (Stoke City)

Stoke boss Hughes has snuck into the official list for his side’s brilliant performance away at Manchester City.

Their gritty, aggressive and determined display at the Etihad showed that any side can go to the champions this season and get a result with the right tactics, a bit of luck and a good game plan.

Hughes’ men have kept things tight at the back with just two goals conceded, which is a better defensive record than Chelsea, Liverpool, Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal, all currently above them in the table.

Award: We reckon Monk should get the award for his side showing the cleverness and guts to match Chelsea over the first part of the season.

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