Great updates mate, keep it up.
A Lonely Place - February 1st, 2014
As I walk down the dusty A-7 highway in the afternoon sun, I realize what a mess I've made of things.
When this season started, everything was looking so good- the squad, my potential relationship with my grandfather, and the English girl...
Fast-forward five months and here I am. Walking down a foul-smelling dirt highway in the middle or nowhere. The squad is in shambles, the board has just sold my best player to make a loan repayment, my grandfather thinks I'm an absolute doofus, and the English girl never even said goodbye.
It's a rough day in the life of Daniel Mourinho, but as I reach the crest of a little hill I notice an old, rundown hotel about two hundred metres off of the main road.
Changing direction, I head straight for the hotel, intrigued. I could use a drink, I think to myself.
As I reach the entrance, a rusty old door swings open and a gaggle of teenagers wearing...Chelsea? kits come bursting out of the hotel.
As they swarm first around me then past me, I look around searching for clues as to why on earth a Chelsea youth team is here.
Feeling a hand on my shoulder, I turn around and see a man wearing a Chelsea training jacket!
"Hi there. You look a little lost," he chuckles in a very easy-going manner. "I'm Michael Emenalo. I'm the youth director for Chelsea," he says, shyly pointing to the crest on his jacket. "Have we met before?"
"Ab- absolutely not," I stammer. I must look more like my father than I think. "I manage the local third division side, and used to play for the Chelsea academy back in the day," I laugh.
Seemingly thinking I was joking, Emenalo laughs along with me. "We're here training for the youth tournament in Porto next week. Our manager, José Mourinho, thought this would be a good spot to get the lads ready for some tough competition. When's your next home match," he asks politely.
"Oh...erm, well you see we're stuck in the relegation phase of the league. The second section of our season doesn't start for another three weeks."
"Unfortunate! I would have loved to take the boys out to watch professionals play while we were here," he said, clearly assuming that the Portuguese third division was professional.
"Yes, too bad," I say awkwardly. "Well, I'll let you get on with it then, have fun here in Povoa de Varzim," I croak with the automatic nature of a tour guide.
"Take care, my friend. Here is my number if you'd like to discuss tactics or training methods while I'm here."
As Emenalo walks onto the team bus, I sit on the curb dumbfounded. In my hand is a Chelsea coach's guide with in-depth information on every player, senior or academy, and every coach, including phone numbers and e-mails.
It might just be my lucky day...