What happened to our U20 World Cup bronze medallists?

 

In 2009 our young U20 lads finished 3rd in the U20 World Cup, which was considered as great success in Hungary and we were expecting some of those lads to finally bring back the golden days of Hungarian football. Three years have passed since then and we are still waiting for some of them to find their form in the national team, meanwhile some of them have disappeared off the radar. In this blog I will tell you where all of those lads who were part of the squad in Egypt are at.

Peter Gulacsi (Goalkeeper)

The goalkeeper was brilliant throughout the tournament as he had to take part in two penalty shootouts, in both of them he was outstanding as he saved a lot of penalties to make sure Hungary went through. He was playing for Liverpool at the time and he is still playing for the English club, but is yet to make a first team appearance in a competitive match. Maybe he will get his chance next season as Pepe Reina is believed to be wanting to leave the club.

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Balazs Megyeri (Goalkeeper)

Didn’t get any time to play during the tournament, but ever since then he has been fantastic as he earned himself a move from Ferencvaros to Greek giants Olympiakos. He has been brilliant in Greece and was awarded the goalkeeper of the year award last season due to the fact that he was superb for his club pulling of some unbelievable saves and only conceding 14 goals throughout the whole season. Still only 22 there is a lot more to come from this exciting young goalkeeper.

Adam Kovacsik (Goalkeeper)

Another goalkeeper graduate from Ferencvaros, Kovacsik moved to Italy in 2007 where he signed for Reggina Calcio. He was part of the U20 squad in Egypt but just like Megyeri he didn’t’ get the opportunity to play as Gulacsi was keeping him out of the sticks. Kovacsik is now 21 and so far he has made a few first team appearances for Reggina before he moved on loan to Foligno Calcio in January 2012. However, Kovacsik wasn’t able to help his team from relegation to the fourth tier of Italian football as he made 11 appearances.

Andras Debreceni (Defender)

He was a key player at the back for Hungary in the tournament alongside Korcsmar. Playing for Budapest Honved at the time but not really getting much of a chance, since then Debreceni has made over 100 appearances for the club and has become the heart of Honved’s defence, still not fulfilling his full potential though as he has failed to make an impact at international level making only one appearance for the Hungarian national team so far. Now at the age of 23, he probably just had his best season for Honved which earned him his only national cap so far. If he does even better next season there will be no reason why he shouldn’t be selected more often by Sandor Egervari.

Zsolt Korcsmar (Defender)

He was another brilliant performer in the tournament as he was a rock at the back. He has lived up to his hype so far as he has earned himself a few Hungarian international caps since the tournament, and in the last few matches Korcsmar has been a regular starter. Korcsmar also earned a move abroad after he impressed at Ujpest, he signed for Norwegian club SK Brann, where he has been playing superb and in a recent match for his club he managed to grab a brace. There is more to come from Korcsmar and I think he will soon go to a more prestigious league, where he will be able to fulfil his full potential.

Adrian Szekeres (Defender)

Was another key part of the team and played in most of the matches at full back until he was sent off against Italy in the quarter finals. Szekeres is a graduate from the very well known MTK Academy that has produced some brilliant players in the past and most of the players in this squad. The defender has also been brilliant for MTK’s first team in the last couple of years , which earned him a move to Videoton. His new club will be fighting for the title in Hungary next season and Szekeres will be hoping to be a regular starter in the team.

Janos Szabo (Defender)

The defender earned himself a place in the U20 squad for the tournament after impressing for Paks in NB1, as he scored his first goal for the team in the 2008/2009 season. After the tournament Szabo failed to make himself a regular starter at Paks. That was only until last season, when he moved on loan to Siofok where he was brilliant and finally proved why he was part of the squad in 2009, as he produced some brilliant performances scoring two goals in 24 appearances in NB1. Szabo will be hoping to do the same next season, but this time at Paks.

Bence Zambo (Defender)

He was a key part of the squad in 2009, but has failed to do that for a very strong Gyor side as he had spent loan spell for a number of clubs including Diosgyor and MTK. Last season he was brilliant for Gyori ETO’s second team that play in NB2 where Zambo made 24 appearances and was a key part of the team. However, Gyor still didn’t want to keep the defender and as result Zambo has gone on loan again. This time he has gone to Kaposvar who were in a relegation battle last season in NB1, Zambo will be hoping to be a regular starter at the club and keep his team away from the bottom two.

Adam Presinger (Defender)

Graduated from MTK’s academy as well, Presinger is the last defender on our list. The defender spent a successful loan spell at Pecs during the 2008/2009 season which earned him to be named in the squad for the U20 team. He played some excellent stuff in the tournament and earned himself a move to Videoton.  However, he has struggled to fight himself into their first team and was sold to Lombard Papa in 2011. He managed to get himself into the first 11 at Papa and was much better for his new team as he scored 1 goal during the 2011/2012 season in 15 matches. Next season he will be hoping to get even more matches for Lombard as at the age of 23 he needs to play regularly to improve.

Adam Dudas (Midfielder)

The winger played a key part in the U20 team as he featured in four matches during the tournament in Egypt. Before the tournament Dudas was very highly rated as he made his debut at the age of 17 for Gyori ETO. Before moving abroad in 2007 when he signed on loan for Spartak Moscow, where he failed to make a first team appearance. It was last season when the player really started to perform for Gyor though as he became a regular at the club and impressed throughout the season making 25 appearances and scoring 7 goals in NB1. Dudas is expected to do the same again and hopefully achieve an even better finish than last season’s. It will be a tough task for him and his team, but I am sure they are up for it.

Bence Toth (Midfielder)

He was supposed to be the best player that came out of Ferencvaros’s academy since Krisztian Lisztes, so there was no surprise when he was named in the squad for the U20 World Cup. However, he failed to become a regular during the tournament and didn’t make many appearances. Meanwhile at club level he was showing his quality during substitute appearances, but failed to make himself a regular starter at Ferencvaros. That was the reason why he moved away from the club in January 2012, and signed for Lombard Papa. Unfortunately he got himself injured straight away and was ruled out for most of the season, which resulted in him only playing 2 NB1 matches for Lombard. We are expecting better things from him next season when he will be fully fit and will get the chance to prove everyone wrong at Ferencvaros.

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Peter Takacs (Midfielder)

Played three matches during the tournament, but struggled to make himself a regular in the team. After he failed to get in to the starting 11 at his hometown club Diosgyor, Takacs moved to Lombard Papa, where he had an excellent season and decided to return to Diosgyor on loan and then permanently. However, he failed to make an impact once again as he only made 12 appaerances in NB1 for the club scoring one goal. He will face an even tougher task in trying to get a regular start next season as Diosgyor have signed Gosztonyi and Elek who both play in positions he could be used at.

Vladimir Koman (Midfielder)

Was arguably the best player of the tournament for Hungary, as he captained us to third place, he was a true leader on the pitch and was involved in literally every goal we scored. Big things were expected from the youngster at his club Sampdoria but he failed to make an impact and struggled to get regular starts. His frustration ended in January 2012 when he signed for French side Monaco where he was excellent and nearly led his team to the play offs in the second tier of French football. He signed for FC Krasnodar this summer where he will get to prove himself in the Russian first division, which is definitely tougher than the French second division. Meanwhile on the other hand Koman has been brilliant for the Hungarian national team ever since Sandor Egervari took over as Koman has made 20 appearances scoring 5 goals. If he can show that sort of form in Russia as well he will have no problem in settling into his new team.

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Adam Simon (Midfielder)

The twin brother of Andras Simon who was also part of the squad, Adam Simon did manage to make 4 appearances during the tournament although he made most of them coming off the bench, however, he was fairly impressive when he played. Simon is another MTK Academy graduate, but he didn’t make any first team appearances for MTK and signed for Haladas, where he was very impressive and even managed to lead the team to a third place finish in NB1. It was those performances that led him to sign to Italian team Palermo in January 2011. He failed to make an appearance for their first team and was loaned to Bari last season. However, he failed to fight himself into the starting 11 there as well and the future of the youngster doesn’t look promising. He needs to find a team where he can play regularly once again, otherwise spending too much time on the bench could ruin his career.

Roland Varga (Midfielder/Striker)

Believe it or not Varga is another graduate from the MTK Academy, where he moved to Italian club Brescia in 2008. In the 2009 U20 World Cup he wasn’t very involved in the tournament as he only made 2 appearances throughout it all. Meanwhile he struggled to fight himself into Bresia’s side and spent a couple of successful loan spells from the club at Ujpest and U.S. Foggia. However, his impressive performances weren’t enough to make him become a regular at Brescia and Varga returned to Hungary in January 2012 as he signed for Gyori ETO. He had a successful half a season there scoring 3 goals in 9 appearances for the club. He will be hoping to do the same again but this time he will get the opportunity to play a full season which will definitely benefit the youngster.

Mate Kiss (Midfielder)

Played a small part in 2009 during the World Cup, but did manage to grab a goal and three appearances throughout the campaign. However, he never really managed to get a regular starting position at Gyor even though he tried his best every time he played, the managers just didn’t fancy picking him and played other players in his place. This could all about to end as he signed for Siofok on loan in the summer and will play next season at the club. He will have a better chance of getting regular starts their and prove his quality to Gyor.

Andras Gosztonyi (Midfielder)

Guess what he is another graduate from MTK’s Academy! He was brilliant in MTK’s first team as well and impressed Sandor Egervari who called him up to the U20s Squad for the World Cup in 2009. Gosztonyi made three appearances throughout the tournament and when he played he impressed. At one point even Everton wanted to sign him, but at the end Videoton were the ones that won the race for him. However, at Videoton he disappeared off the radar and didn’t manage to get into the starting 11of the team. He had enough of sitting on the bench this summer and signed for Diosgyor. Gosztonyi will definitely get his chance to shine their and find his form back.

Krisztian Nemeth (Striker)

He was the star striker of the U20 squad and at the time he was also the star striker at the Liverpool reserve team. Nemeth scored 3 goals in the tournament including a brilliant brace against Italy which won the game for the Hungarian side at extra time in the 117th minute. When Nemeth came back from the tournament he failed to get himself into the Liverpool side and was sold to Olympiakos in 2011. He failed to get a regular place in the team there as well and was loaned out once again. Nemeth struggled with injuries during his loan and returned to the club where he started his career which was MTK. In January 2012 Nemeth decided to move to Holland, that decision was probably one the best decisions of his life as he was superb in Holland for RKC Waalwijk. In the summer he moved to another Dutch team Roda JC, where he will get the chance to shine once again and prove why he was so highly rated back in his Liverpool days. Meanwhile Krisztian has also made a few appearances for the National team, but hasn’t managed to find the back of the net yet in the Hungarian jersey.

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Andras Simon (Striker)

Another striker that had a little spell in Liverpool’s reserve team, but Simon wasn’t really able to fight himself into the starting 11 there. He still made Egervari’s squad for the tournament though, however, he only made one appearance throughout the whole campaign as he struggled to make himself a regular. When he returned to England he was loaned out to Spanish side Cordoba, he only made 9 appearances there scoring no goals. Another unsuccessful spell in Holland resulted in him returning to Hungary in 2012 as he signed for Gyor. A serious injury ruled him out for most of the season and in the summer he was loaned out to NB1 side Lombard Papa, where he will be able to get regular starts and score some goals maybe.

Adam Balajti (Striker)

Adam Balajti played a key role during the tournament as he made three appearances scoring one goal in the semi final loss against Ghana. Since then the player has been to a number of clubs, including Diosgyor, Debrecen, Ujpest and MTK. His most successful spell came at MTK as he helped his team to win NB2 with 7 goals in 16 appearances. It is still not clear whether or not he will stay at MTK or return to Debrecen where he was loaned out from. I think it would be better for the player to stay at MTK where he will be able to play regularly and prove himself in NB1 once again.

Marko Futacs (Striker)

Futacs also scored one goal in the tournament which was against Ghana in the semi final and he played in two other matches as well, where he impressed. After the tournament he spent a loan spell at Ingolstadt, where he was brilliant, but the side that loaned him out (Werder Bremen) didn’t want to keep him. So Futacs moved to Portsmouth in England. He had a fairly good first season there as he scored five goals in a struggling Portsmouth side, which was relegated from the Championship last season. However, Futacs moved away from the club and signed for Leicester City, where he will face a tough task in trying to become the first choice striker at the club, we Hungarians are hoping he will be able to do it though.

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