What has happened to Gergely Rudolf?


After  Gergely Rudolf’s shock transfer to DVTK yesterday, Bence Bocsák looks back on how Rudolf went from being one of Hungary’s biggest stars to being frozen out in less than a year.

It’s hard to believe what has happened to Gergely Rudolf in such a small amount of time. It was only last year when he scored a late winner against Sweden in a memorable match for the Hungarians. His record under Sándor Egervári is 8 goals in 12 games. However, an injury plagued 2011/2012 season and loss of form means that he hasn’t played for the Hungarian national team for over a year now.

Rudolf has literally gone from hero to zero. He hasn’t been able to perform well for his clubs since he moved to Genoa from Debrecen back in 2010. He moved to Genoa after having some brilliant seasons at Debrecen scoring goals at the highest of stages including the Champions League and the Europa League, he also managed to win six trophies in Hungary during his 3 year stay. Genoa spent well in the summer of 2010, but they still failed to make a good start to the season and with Rudolf failing to make himself a regular for Genoa, he was soon loaned out to Serie A strugglers Bari. At this time he was on superb form for the Hungarian national team and it looked like he was going to be a decent signing for Bari. Unfortunately, he wasn’t really able to find his form  here either as he went on to score just 2 goals in 13 matches which wasn’t enough to save Bari from relegation as they finished bottom of the league.

Therefore it doesn’t come as a surprise for Rudolf when he gets told that he isn’t wanted at Genoa. Although, Greek giants Panathinaikos decide to take him on loan for a season and give him another chance. His situation looks more and more worrying as it is Rudolf’s third club in just a year and once again he was expected to prove himself.

The situation doesn’t goes as planned though due to the fact that the 20 times Greek champions fail to qualify for the group stages of the Europa League, so the mood in the Panathinaikos camp is already very tense. It is clear that Rudolf needs to prove himself otherwise he will get stick from the media and the fans very quickly. Despite all that he fails to make a good impression once again, although this time it is not quite his fault. In September he injures himself on international duty which rules him out of action until December. He does indeed return in December to play four games before suffering another injury. After another three months out he returns in April to justify his transfer. In his first game he scores a winner against Aris. Suddenly all his disappointment during the season starts to fade away as he is even called back into the Hungarian national side. Unfortunately three weeks after his return he gets injured again! The last time we saw him in action was back in 22nd April. Rudolf was clearly frustrated and he told newspapers in Hungary that he even watches where he steps to make sure he doesn’t pick up any more injuries.

In the summer he returns to Italy but pretty soon he finds out that Genoa are desperate to sell him and towards the end of the window when it looks very likely that they won’t be able to, they release Rudolf from the club. So what’s next for the Hungarian striker? Rudolf is first linked with a few clubs in Russia, however with the amount of Hungarian players that have struggled there over the years, it looks like the worst possible destination for him. He would also need to prove himself straight away over there otherwise he would be dropped from his team and left to rot on the bench. Rudolf is then linked with a number of other clubs abroad including the likes of Marseille and Getafe. Where he probably wouldn’t get the chance to play regular football and not playing regularly is definitely something that Rudolf doesn’t need right now. I was hoping Rudolf would find a decent club abroad where he would be able to start every game and prove people in Italy wrong. Unfortunately that didn’t happen as he failed to secure his future during the transfer window and he was left to find a club himself.

With teams abroad cooling their interest in Rudolf, Hungarian teams start to become interested in him, at first it’s Videoton who is heavily linked with the Hungarian striker. That move seemed very likely as Videoton are in the Europa League and they are also favourites to win the Hungarian title this year, Rudolf would also definitely get into their first 11, where he would be able to link up with Nemanja Nikolic. However, Rudolf’s move to Videoton broke down and the club denied all their interest in him, which is a shame as he would have made Videoton’s squad a bit stronger for the Europa League.

After Vidi pulled out the next club that was interested in him was Diósgyőr who spent well in the summer bringing in the likes of Ákos Elek and András Gosztonyi, but they currently sit 6th in NB1 after six games. Rudolf eventually signed for the Diósgyőr on Wednesday penning a three year contract which will keep him at the club until 2015. Seeing Rudolf move to Diósgyőr is a massive shock, however he had to choose them since they were the only club interested in him and he wanted to sort his future out as soon as possible. With the quality of players Diósgyőr have now Rudolf and his co must aim to make one of the European spots at least this year in the league, otherwise their season would be looked upon as a failure.

Lastly, all I can say that I am very much hoping Rudolf finds his form as he has been missed in the national team during the last year. He isn’t just a goal scorer he brings a lot more creativity in to the team as well. Hopefully, he will prove his quality for Diósgyőr now, and if he does he will be back at the national team in no time.