NB1 Round 13 preview

Welcome to our weekly preview and prediction column as Paul and Chris take a look under the hood of each of this week’s games in the NB1.  They give you their expert opinion on how things are shaping up as well as collect all the team info they can to give you a better picture of each side’s chances ahead of kickoff. 

Paul: Chris, congratulations on a good round 12 for you.   As you noted, now everyone team has faced each other so we have some statistics to work on now.  A total of 17 goals scored which is one of the highest scoring weeks thus far in recent memory.  A nice win in Greece for Vidi but they couldn’t continue their momentum in Hungary.  My gut feeling was wrong on Puskás but I shall push on nonetheless. Off we go to a lucky round 13….

Chris: Thanks Paul, but as you and I both know it is feast or famine with this league in terms of predictions.  There are some great matches this week as well as a couple of surprise suspensions thanks to the excellent work of the MLSz Disciplinary Committee.  Read on for a full preview of all the games. 

Saturday, 3 November

Kisvárda vs Honvéd

at Várkert Sportpálya, Kisvárda

Paul: Kisvárda played very well to secure a draw against a tired Vidi squad.  They are an up and down club, often capable of playing good football.  A second home match in a row will boost the club to play inspired football.  They will earn a draw for the second week in a row against top flight competition.

Honvéd narrowly defeated Haladás to earn a win in the final minutes of the match.  They are not playing too well at the moment, yet still find themselves in the second position.  Can the goal scoring come alive in this match?  I still see them struggling to score goals and will created many chances but fail to convert them.

Prediction: Kisvárda 1-1 Honvéd

Chris: Kisvárda won their cup match against third tier Gyöngyösi 4-0 this week with goals coming from András Gosztyonyi and Sergiu Negrut – two each.  It was a fairly easy hurdle even as they rotated the side that leveled Vidi on Sunday.  That result is sure to boost confidence.  They’ve also scored in each of their past 8 league matches.
Honvéd squeezed past Jászberény thanks to an early David N’Gog goal in their midweek cup match.  Attila Supka fully rotated his side.  Honvéd are still struggling in attack with only three goals in their last six games.  Luckily their defense has been just as stingy, allowing only three in that span as well.  They’ve only conceded two away from home thus far.

This is a difficult one to call but Honvéd have been finding a way and should be able to win again. They won 4-0 in their first meeting, but I can’t see a similar result occurring here.

Prediction: Kisvárda 1-2 Honvéd

Mezőkövesd vs Debrecen

at Városi Stadion, Mezőkövesd

Paul: Mezőkövesd have won their last three home matches and are starting to develop a home presence.  Debrecen will present a challenge for them, of course.  This should be an up and down game between two clubs with very contrasting styles.  The home field advantage makes the difference in this competitive match

Debrecen find themselves in the fourth position after a solid home win.  They haven’t won away in five matches and that looks to continue here.  They will create  many chances but the solid defense of the home side will prove to be the difference in a close match.

Prediction: Mezőkövesd 2-1 Debrecen

Chris:  Mezőkövesd played mostly reserves to defeat Ménfőcsanak 1-0 in the cup this week.  Márk Koszta scored the winner three minutes from time.  They’ve won their last three home games and drew Debrecen 1-1 in their first meeting this season.  Gábor Molnár has been outstanding since joining Mezo and I’d count on him continuing his fine form at home.

András Herczeg fielded a mostly second-choice side in Debrecen’s 3-0 cup win over Teskánd this week.  Debrecen almost mis-handled what should have been an easy win last week at home over Puskás but still managed to hold off the visitors to take all the points. 

Debrecen haven’t won away from home in the league this season and I think Mezőkövesd is too tough an opponent to to see that change this week.

Prediction: Mezőkövesd 2-1 Debrecen

Paks vs MOL Vidi

at Fehérvári úti Stadion, Paks 

Paul: Paks have won their last four at home and have regained their home field dominance.  This will be a great challenge to them, but  they are unlucky to catch a well-rested Vidi club.  The chances will be there for goals but will not be converted to secure a home win.

The two match a week routine once again was too much for Vidi as they lost points against Kisvárda.  Vidi are a different team when they only play a one match versus two matches per week.  This will be a difficult match but they will find a way to scrape by with a win.

Prediction: Paks 1-2 Vidi

Chris: Paks played a rotated side that needed a number of first-team regulars as late substitutes for a come-from-behind 2-1 cup win over Csákvar this week.  Left back János Szabó played the entire game and looks set for a return to the first team.

Vidi rested some key players and beat the team that knocked them out of the cup last year, Vac, 3-1 this week.  This won’t be an easy game for the champions who struggled to hold off lowly Kisvárda last week.  Paks are undefeated at home this season but this will be their biggest test yet at Fehérvári úti.  One surprise for Vidi is that Stefan Scepovic and Anel Hadzic were handed suspensions by the Disciplinary Committee this week.  Scepovic and Hadzic’s suspensions are retroactive to their match against Puskás where there was an incident at the end of the game.  Referee Gergely Szots didn’t include the incident in his report but after further investigation the two were handed bans which means they’ll sit out this out week making Paks’ task that much easier. 

Prediction: Paks 2-2 Vidi

Puskás Akadémia vs Diósgyőr

at Pancho Aréna, Felcsút 

Paul: Diósgyor gave a vote of confidence to their manager and are being very patient with a club that is uninspired and not very talented.  They are able to shore up the defense in this match and secure a win with a goal in the final quarter of the match.

Puskás are a very up and down club who are capable of anything good and bad. Once again in a recurring theme, another club lacking offensive firepower.  This match will feature many more cards than goals.

Prediction: Puskás 0-1 Diósgyőr

Chris: Puskás downed Dunaújváros 2-0 with a rotated squad in the cup this week.  They return home where they’ve won their last three games against top opponents.  A brave performance at Debrecen last week fell just short of a draw, but they should feel confident playing Diósgyőr who are on run of five consecutive defeats in the league.  This is a difficult time to be a DVTK supporter.  I feel for you … feel your pain.  It gets worse.  

Prediction: Puskás 2-0 Diósgyőr

Újpest vs Haladás

at Szusza Ferenc Stadion, Budapest

Paul: Újpest lost last week to MTK after winning their last two matches.  Where has the offense gone for the Lilak?  They are having big trouble scoring goals and this shows in their present league position.   A home match along with the opponent will secure a win and possibly get this club headed in the right direction.

I can’t remember the last time Haladás won.   Last week was a little better but they still are missing out on the few chances they create on the offensive end of the pitch.   Like the Lilak, they are lacking goals and offense.  The losing sadly continues once again 

Prediction: Újpest 3-1 Haladás

Chris: Újpest needed extra time to defeat Gyor in a pulsating midweek cup match.  It’s a good thing they are playing Haladás at home as Hali are on a run of five consecutive league defeats and couldn’t finish against Honvéd last week despite a number of gilt-edged chances including a penalty.  Újpest are still struggling in attack, but it’s difficult to look past them in this one.  

To answer your question Paul, the last time Hali won in the league was in mid-August at home against Puskás.  That was a long time ago. 

Prediction: Újpest 2-0 Haladás

Ferencváros vs MTK

at Groupama Aréna, Budapest

Paul:  Another Budapest Derby which happens  when there are four teams from the capital city.  Ferencváros will once again dispose of MTK in easy fashion at home.  Dániel Böde showed with his hat trick that he deserves more playing time and he is still a goal scorer.

MTK are up to the third position and appear to be the real deal, title contenders not title pretenders.  An away match will prove to be too much for the squad but they will be respectable and lose by only two goals.  

Prediction: Ferencváros 3-1 MTK

Chris:  Both Ferencváros and MTK made easy work of their midweek cup opponents, winning 4-0 and 5-0 respectively.  Ferencváros were back to winning ways after their demolition of Diosgyor, while MTK pulled off a smash-and-grab against Újpest in the league last week. It’s been 16 years since MTK won at Ferencváros, but they’ve draw their last two contests against them at Groupama.   

Ferencváros have not lost at home in the league for a year.  Sergei Rebrov looks to be working his system into the club and the players are responding well.  MTK done just what they set out to do at the start of the season by establishing a strong league position early.  István Bognár has been dangerous recently for MTK and their strong team confidence will make this one a close game. 

Prediction:  Ferencváros 3-2 MTK