Videoton vs Genk – Preview

 

­Videoton host group leaders Genk tonight knowing that a win will almost certainly guarantee them a place in the first knockout round of the Europa League.

After a naiive, inexperienced performance last time out against Basel, the 2011 Hungarian champions Videoton know that they will have to perform with more gusto and poise if they are to beat the impressive Genk at the Sostoi Stadium tonight.

Genk have been in great form this Europa League campaign, totalling up a points tally of 8 after 4 games, lying undefeated at the top of Group G.

The 2011 Belgian champions got a creditable draw in Lisbon against Sporting in the last round, and also drew in Basel 2-2.

Videoton have won both of their home games so far with an incredible 3-0 victory over Sporting and a tight 2-1 win against Basel.

Genk were defeated by Club Brugge in the Jupiler League at the weekend and head coach, Mario Been has been quick to dismiss any domestic hangover.

“I regret our league defeat at the weekend, but we have now closed that game, and are not dealing with it anymore,” said Been in his pre-match press conference. “It is very important for us to have more of the possession than our opponent. This will help us to create more chances. At the same time we know that Videoton will be waiting for us to make a mistake, and if this happens, then I am sure that they will make good use of it.”

Videoton will certainly play on the counter attack as they have done in their previous four Europa League outings, but Sousa is wary that Genk don’t need to be ambitious to progress.

“We can gamble as much as Genk’s game allows us to. Genk will not want to risk too much in Thursday’s match, as they would if they were playing at home,” he said. “Genk are a very good team, with individual good players making up their squad. They are quick in switching from defence to attack, which brings them results.”

Videoton were beaten 3-0 in Belgium when the sides last met, but Sousa doesn’t think the scoreline was a true reflection of the game.

“I felt that we matched them in the first game, and thought that the game could even have finished with a different result. We will do everything tomorrow evening to make sure that we remain with this fantastic possibility, which we are so close to now.”

Vidi have a full squad to prepare for tonight’s game with the exception of Stopira, who is still nursing an injury picked up against Basel.

The Hungarians defence has been a particular highlight this season, and the centre back pairing of Paulo Vinicius and Canieria will have to be at their best again today to combat the attacking talent of Buffel and Vossen.

The fledging Roland Szolnoki will again deputise at left back with Brachi keeping his place on the right.

Sousa has rotated his midfield in every European game so far, but the pairing of Balazs Toth and Nikola Mitrovic are likely to sit in front of the defence.

Filipe Oliveira and Walter Lee will bring pace and guile to the wings with Adam Gyurcso likely to sit out.

Captain Gyorgy Sandor will play in between the lines behind the lone front man, Nemanja Nikolics, who’s started in all of Videoton’s  home European games.

Vidi’s story so far has been almost fairytale like. Their thin squad has defeated teams with much larger budgets, and the Belgians will have to be wary not to slip up to the underdog again tonight.

But Genk have an array of attacking players who can open up a defence, and even though Videoton weren’t played off the park in Belgium, it was fair to say that Genk had much more quality on the ball.

Videoton have been strong at home throughout the campaign (an unbeaten run stretching back 19 years in Europe), and their defence has been the backbone to their success. If they can keep it tight again tonight, with Walter and Filipe Oliveira causing trouble on the break, there’s no reason why they can’t get a positive result.

Prediction: Videoton 1-1 Genk

 

Standings

1. Genk 4 2 2 0 8:4 8
2. Videoton 4 2 0 2 5:5 6
3. Basel 4 1 2 1 4:4 5
4. Sporting 4 0 2 2 2:6 2

 

Previous Results

 

Thursday 20th September

Genk 3-0 Videoton

Sporting 0-0 Basel

Thursday 4th October

Videoton 3-0 Sporting CP

Basel 2-2 Genk

Thursday 26th October

Videoton 2-1 Basel

Genk 2-1 Sporting

Thursday 8th November

Basel 1-0 Videoton

Sporting 1-1 Genk