Ferguson and Manchester United extended their lead at the top of the Barclays Premier League during April, securing four wins out of four and scoring twelve goals along the way.

The Red Devils began the month with a dramatic 3-2 win over Aston Villa, with 17-year-old Federico Macheda scoring a stunning last-gasp winner to see off Martin O'Neill's side. A week later, Macheda was at it again, coming off the bench to score the decider in a 2-1 win over Sunderland at the Stadium of Light.

dominant display

England duo Wayne Rooney and Michael Carrick gave the defending champions another three points following a dominant display against Portsmouth at Old Trafford.

United ended the month with a stunning comeback against Tottenham Hotspur at the 'Theatre of Dreams'. 2-0 down at the end of the first half, five goals in the space of 22 second half minutes from Ferguson's men secured the win, with Wayne Rooney and Cristiano Ronaldo both bagging a brace.

The Barclays Manager of the Month award for April is Ferguson's 23rd, and second this season, having also scooped January's award.

opening goal

Meanwhile, Arsenal's Andrey Arshavin has capped an impressive first few months in English football by winning the Barclays Player of the Month award, after a string of scintillating performances helped the Gunners' to cement their position in the top four of the Barclays Premier League.

In winning the accolade, he becomes only the second-ever Russian recipient, emulating Andrei Kanchelskis's April 1996 achievement.

January transfer window capture Arshavin announced himself to Barclays Premier League fans in style during the frenetic 4-4 draw with Liverpool at Anfield, scoring all four Arsenal goals in an outstanding individual performance.

This followed up an assist and last-minute strike in the 4-1 victory at Wigan and another strong outing in the 2-0 home victory over Manchester City at the Emirates Stadium. Arshavin's superb month was completed as he combined expertly with captain Cesc Fabregas for the Spaniard to net the opening goal in the 2-0 win over Middlesbrough.

The Euro 2008 star, with six Barclays Premier League goals already to his name, is the first Arsenal player to scoop the award since Fabregas himself won the prize in September 2007.

The decision was made by the Barclays Awards Panel, which includes representatives from football's governing bodies, the media and fans.