NB1 Round 8 Preview

Hungarian NB1 football is back this week for Round 8 and there is a full slate of matches on Saturday.  Paul Treso and Chris Barrett give their prediction for each game, as well as a short preview. So, sit back, relax and read on as they bring you the breakdown of each contest this weekend.

Paul: Chris, welcome back after a one week break for national team matches.  I hope the break did you as well as it hopefully will for our Hungarian clubs.  Quick note on the Hungarian national team matches.A tale of two matches.A loss against Finland where Hungary dominated the time of possession.  An impressive win over Greece where Greece dominated the time of possession.Of course, football is played for goal.On to round 8 with improvement possibly after a week of fine tuning each clubs by their respective managers.

Chris: Yeah, it was an encouraging start to the Nations League for Hungary, but onto the NB1 where the aftermath of the transfer deadline has each team’s squad basically settled until January.Let’s look at the fixtures for Saturday!

Saturday, 15 September

Kisvárda vs Haladás

at Várkert Sportpálya, Kisvárda

Paul: Kisvárda won their first match of the season against MTK and on the road to boot.  They have improved after adjusting to play in the first division.In a vanilla match look for a lackluster draw.

Haladás have also been one of the big disappointments of the season as they have not continued their improved play from the later stages of last season.  They are winning in their last away matches with three loses and a draw. A draw is the result here.

Prediction: Kisvárda 1-1 Haladás

Chris:Kisvárda have found some traction and, after a massive result against MTK in round 7 head home looking to extend their impressive unbeaten run after a horrible start to the season.Roberto Carlos look-alike Anderson Pico has been in great form for the newly promoted side who won their first game in the top flight last week.

Things aren’t looking good for Haladás, especially away from home where they haven’t won since April. The strugglers from Szombathely lost 3-0 to Mattersburg in a friendly in Austria last week.They are in poor form all around and worse away from home.

Prediction: Kisvárda 2-1 Haladás

Paks vs MTK Budapest

at Fehérvári úti Stadion, Paks

Paul:This should be an intriguing match with a lot of goals.  Paks lost their top defender in Janos Szabo so that will weaken their defense, but it’s their offense and counter attack that is the squad’s strength.  I see an offensive match with the home squad winning by a goal.

MTK played poorly in their last match in losing to Kisvárda.  MTK may be coming back to earth after a strong start to the season.  They score goals but also give up plenty as well.In a hard fought match, they lose to Paks in the final minutes.

Prediction: Paks 3-2 MTK

Chris:Paks are on a four-match unbeaten run but were unable to penetrate lowly DVTK’s defense in round 7.At home they’ve been much more attack-minded, scoring four goals in their two played there so far this season. They’ll be less effective on defense with starting left back János Szabó out for a few weeks with a knee injury.

MTK will be looking to rebound from an embarrassing defeat at home to Kisvárda two weeks ago. Tamás Feczkó’s side have only lost once in their last five away trips to Paks and should be able to get something out of this one.Myke Ramos left MTK for Al-Ittihad on loan during the break which leaves László Lensce as their primary threat up front.

Prediction:Paks 1-1 MTK

Mezőkövesd vs Diósgyőr

at Városi Stadion, Mezőkövesd

Paul: A derby so to speak by clubs that are not located far from each other.   Mezőkövesd are not a particularly strong home side.  They won their last home match against Puskás and I see a similar result against a similar quality squad.

Diósgyor have not won in their last four away matches, with a draw their best results.  This team is also lacking an identity and has a serious deficit in quality of players.  A draw is possible but despite a good effort, they will come up short.

Prediction: Mezőkövesd 1-0 Diósgyőr

Chris:Diósgyőr are still scrambling to construct a team worthy of staying in NB1 and they made a bunch of moves at the deadline in hopes of doing just that.It’s difficult to understand the logic behind sending away two talented forwards with little to replace them.Most of the players they brought in were bit-part players, and with center back Márk Tamás injured their one strength – defense – will be under more pressure.

Mezőkövesd returned to winning ways last round and should continue in the same vein here.Left back Dániel Vadnai is the one to watch here.He’s been sensational so far for Mezo.

Prediction: Mezőkövesd 2-0 Diósgyőr

Puskás Akadémia vs MOL Vidi

at Pancho Aréna, Felcsút

Paul: Technically a home match for both clubs.  Puskás are a team in turmoil and playing poorly.  A poor combination for a club playing an in form Mol Vidi club fresh from earning a spot in the Euro Liga next round.  Things continue to spiral down for a club that will look to avoid relegation all season.

The week off will do Vidi well after their hectic two match a week schedule.  The club will dominate Puskás though the score will be rather modest.   They will be able to make early substitution and and won’t be pressed hard at all in this match.

Prediction: Puskás 0-2 Vidi

Chris: Bottom of the table Puskás are still looking for cohesion.The league’s worst defense didn’t see an upgrade at the transfer deadline and will be playing the current champions Vidi who are playing really good, attack-minded football.They did, however, sign former Vidi defensive midfielder Jószef Varga who will be motivated against his former employer, but Puskás are dreaming if they think they can pick up points here.

Vidi increased their attacking depth with the addition of Georgi Milanov and they’ve had a couple of weeks to rest from their European qualification campaign so now would not be a good time to play them.

Prediction: Puskás 1-3 Vidi

Újpest vs Debrecen

at Szusza Ferenc Stadion, Budapest

Paul: Újpest have been one of the major disappointments in the league so far this season.  Can the extra week off do they some good?I see some improvement this week but against a tough Debrecen club a draw is in the works.

Debrecen has actually played better on the road than at home.  With that said, look for the Lilak to secure a draw in a exciting, offensive match.

Prediction: Újpest 2-2 Debrecen

Chris: Újpest are making it a habit to send players on loan to the club they’re facing the following week.With Patrik Tischler playing for Honvéd against them in round 7, now Bence Pávkovics will don a Loki shirt against them this week.Újpest played well in their goalless draw against Honvéd, but haven’t won in three rounds.They haven’t lost at home to Debrecen in their last five meetings at Szusza Ferenc Stadion.

Debrecen are still struggling with injuries and Pávkovic’s move is certainly to provide cover for a depleted side.They had a perfect opportunity to get maximum points against lowly Haladás last week but struggled with their finishing despite a 20-8 shot on target advantage.It looks as if last season’s leading scorer Haris Tabakovic’s return date won’t be until late October or early November – not good news for Loki.

Prediction: Újpest 2-1 Debrecen

Honvéd vs Ferencváros

at New Hidegkuti Nándor Stadion, Budapest

Paul: The match of the week and not one to miss.  Honvéd finally have a good number of strikers and it should be interesting to see which ones start.  This will be an exciting match with plenty of goals and I see a draw.

Will the extra week provide some time for Ferencváros to jell under the concept of their new manager?  While one of the most talented squad in the first division, Fradi is not a super strong away squad.  They start off strong here but come away disappointed with a draw.

Prediction: Honvéd 2-2 Ferencváros

Chris: The top two face off in the capital.Both teams drew their games before the international break.Honvéd have had little success recently against Ferencváros with just one victory in their last 9 head-to-head meetings. This will be the first time Davide Lanzafame returns to face Kispest in a green and white kit and it should prove to be a fantastic match.

Ferencváros are still top and have enjoyed a good record away from home, but this will be their biggest test away from Groupama so far this season.

Prediction:Honvéd 1-2 Ferencváros