Pellegrini, Austin win awards

Pellegrini’s reigning Premier League champions enjoyed a stellar month – recording five consecutive league wins that began with an impressive 4-1 victory at Sunderland.

Victories over Everton, Leicester, Crystal Palace and West Brom followed and only a spirited performance from Burnley could deny them all three points in their final fixture of 2014 as their title defence continues to gather momentum.

Austin’s goalscoring feats have kept struggling QPR in with a chance of beating the drop and his recent form has led to calls for his inclusion in England’s next squad.

It was a bittersweet start to the month for the 25-year-old as he found the net before being sent off in a 2-0 victory over relegation rivals Burnley at Loftus Road.

Two weeks later, his inspired hat-trick clinched Rangers a potentially crucial 3-2 home victory over fellow strugglers West Brom and he rounded off a fruitful month by finding the net once more in the 2-1 defeat at Arsenal.

Austin becomes only the second QPR player to win a Premier League Player of the Month award alongside Trevor Sinclair, who won it in October 1995.