September was a fairly good month for us, however as you'll see in a moment we dropped three key points away in the final match of the month against a top-table rival.
The away match against Lixa was fairly straightforward, as they are the bottom-table club in our league. A goal and sweet assist from loanee wonderkid Gamboa put us up two-nil in the first twenty minutes and we never looked back, taking a deserved three points off of Lixa.
Nani, Nelsinho, and To Barbosa all scored for us in the opening 15 minutes of the Oliveirense game, and then I just parked the bus on 'Counter'. Easy three points yet again for the Varzim boys.
The Joane game was quite tricky. In front of an early-season record home crowd of 1004 on 'fan day', we took the lead on 44 minutes through Nani, and just gritted our teeth and defended our way to three points on a day when we weren't our best.
The cup match against non-league Vila Real was a cakewalk, with Amilton, Nani, and Pedro Alexandre all scoring in the opening half hour before the match got chippy. Seven yellows and two reds for our clunky opponents made me feel fortunate not to have picked up any injuries.
The last game of the month was also our biggest, as we traveled to Ribeirao for a battle of the two top teams in the table. Ribeirao, despite being picked for 5th by the media during pre-season, have really been in-form and continued it, outshooting us 17-5 en route to a solid 2-0 victory against a weak and uninspired Varzim squad.
Player of the Month
This month's Varzim S.C. Player of the Month, brought to you by Tio Joao's Chorizo House, is midfielder Nani. The 23 year-old led the team (and was second in league scoring) with three goals to start the season, and also led the team (fourth in the league) with a 7.30 average match rating. This kid is the future of our midfield, no doubt about it.
Honorable mention goes to loanee striker To Barbosa, who's averaging a 6.95 match rating and has two goals of his own thus far.
A Look Ahead with Daniel Mourinho - October
The month of October will be much more difficult than September for our club, as we face both title challengers F.C. Famalicao in league play AND Segunda Liga outfit Portimonense, only one year removed from the Primeira Liga, in the Taca da Portugal 3rd Round. Throw in tricky away matches against Guimaraes "B" and Tirsense to start the month, and I think we will have a difficult month schedule-wise. We end with Vizela at home.
League-wise, I will be happy to take seven points out of the four matches, seeing as three of them are on the road. Seven points of twelve should keep us in a promotion phase spot near the top of the table.
The focus this month is obviously the big Portimonense match at home, because of the money that comes from the Portuguese equivalent of the F.A. Cup. The Taca da Portugal is the domestic cup, and advancing into the later stages with a third division outfit could bolster the club's finances greatly. But first, we must kill a fairly big giant by our standards in Portimonense...