Wales vs Hungary Preview

"If the Welsh are the Dragons then we must be the lions!"
-Marco Rossi - Hungary manager

The die has been cast and it’s all or nothing for Hungary in their final Group E qualification match on Tuesday evening in Cardiff.  Everything is coming together on a night that is starting with high stakes and should provide quite a bit of drama as the curtain falls on automatic qualification.  

What: Euro 2020 Qualification - Group E: Wales vs Hungary

When: Tuesday, 19 November - kickoff 18:45 (CET)

Where: Cardiff City Stadium, Cardiff, UK (33,000 capacity)

Weather forecast: Cloudy, 8ºC

Referee: Ovidiu Hategan (ROU), AR -Octavian Sovre (ROU), AR - Sebastian Gheorghe (ROU) 4O - Sebastian Coltescu (ROU)

What’s at stake? With Croatia securing top spot on Saturday, the final automatic qualification spot in Group E is still up for grabs among three countries.

Who is still in the hunt? Hungary have the inside track over Wales and Slovakia, but only just.  With Croatia’s win over Slovakia on Saturday, Hungary will qualify automatically with a win over Wales.  A victory for the Welsh will propel them into next summer's Finals instead, forcing Hungary to battle for a spot in the March playoffs.  

With Hungary holding a point advantage over Wales they would finish over Ryan Giggs’ side with a draw, but Slovakia then becomes a threat.  Slovakia host Azerbaijan in Trnava in their final game on Tuesday and a home win is likely on the cards.  If Wales and Hungary draw and Slovakia win then Slovakia will go through based on their head-to-head record against Hungary in qualification.

Hungary update:

Marco Rossi will be without a few players going into this crucial match. Willi Orbán has been deemed unfit and will not play. The 27 year-old RB Leipzig midfielder, who has primarily been used as a center back by Rossi, picked up an injury in a German Cup match back on 30 October and hasn't been cleared for a return to action.

Predicted lineup for Hungary

"The key is to have the team believe that you can win this match. In my opinion, this is the key to success and direct qualification. The Welshmen have very dangerous attackers, but I discovered vulnerable points in their defense against Azerbaijan."
- Máté Pátkai

DAC's Zsolt Kalmár was injured in Hungary's 2-1 friendly defeat against Uruguay on Friday night. The attacking midfielder played 83 minutes before suffering a broken ankle and replaced by Dávid Holmán. Tamas Kadar is also unavailable for Rossi.

And despite Mihály Korhut's wonder goal against Azerbaijan back in October, the Aris FC defender also picked his second yellow card in the second half of that match which means he'll be serving a one-game ban against Wales. He got his first caution in the final minute of their win against Wales in Budapest.

One bright spot will be the return of Ádám Nagy in midfield. The Bristol City player came on as a second half substitute and has been cleared to start against Wales.

With Pátkai sure to be alongside him in a defensive midfield role, the duo will need to play strong and challenge the strength of Kieffer Moore, the speed of Daniel James, and the technical brilliance of Bale.

Wales update:

Coming off a 2-0 win over Azerbaijan on Saturday, Ryan Giggs' squad have made the 2,600 mile (4,200km) flight back from Baku and rested on Sunday. Wales have a quality side with Gareth Bale leading the way alongside Aaron Ramsey (both of whom have fitness concerns).

Wales vs Hungary
Predicted lineup for Wales

Bale played for an hour in Baku and was replaced by Ramsey giving both a manageable workload in hopes of both starting on Tuesday. Midfielder Joe Allen is also set to return after serving a one-match suspension, sitting out against Azerbaijan.

But defender Joe Rodon and midfielder Jonathan Williams (both of whom started against Croatia in October) are out after each underwent surgery earlier this month. Even so, this is a team that has something to prove as they look to avenge a narrow defeat in Budapest this summer.

Ryan Giggs has made it clear that he doesn't want to mess with what's working. Since losing to Hungary this summer they've won three and drawn two - including against Croatia at home. With Bale and Ramsey lacking fitness it's possible he won't start them together. Joe Morrell's impressive performance against Azerbaijan will make it tough for Joe Allen to get back into the side but this could be a match where added experience and grit could make the difference.

Prediction:

It's difficult to say which team has the most pressure going into Tuesday night's match. Wales are looking to return to the Euros for a second straight time without having to go through a playoff round. They share a disappointing 2018 World Cup qualification with Hungary and are itching to return to the big stage. Playing at home will be a huge boost for Wales but it's unlikely Bale and Ramsey will last the full 90 minutes.

That being said, Hungary manager Marco Rossi is spot on as he's mentioned the first 15-20 minutes will be key. If Bale and Co. can break through Hungary's weakened defense early this could be a slog for Hungary. The addition of Nagy will be a huge boost and the opportunity for this side to gain automatic qualification will also be extra motivation. Rossi rested Lovrencsics, Gulácsi, and Pátkai against Uruguay. He was also able to pull most of his attacking starters after 60 minutes or so which means his starting XI will be fresh.

Lovrencsics will be a key player as he can be dangerous with Dzsudzsák on the right. If Rossi can launch his wide attacks from his full backs it will allow his wingers to flood the box and cause chaos, but it also leaves them exposed for counter attacks. But with Pátkai and Nagy possible playing deeper and winning back possession it might be worth the risk.

There is no reason to sit on a draw here so we should see a winner. It will be balanced on a knife's edge. Hungary's away record speaks for itself with just one win in twelve since 2016 but, if Hungary can hold off an opening onslaught, I think they'll be able to ease by in the end.

Wales 1-2 Hungary


NBI Round 12 Preview

Welcome to HungarianFootball.com's weekly preview where Chris Barrett and Paul Treso take a look at each game and give their predictions throughout the season.

Paul:  Round 11 was my favorite round in recent memory.  So many exciting games with goals scored, and many, many surprises.  Matches that went back and forth with several decided in the second half.   What will happen this week, I can’t even begin to guess….

Chris: As we start the second lap in the league, the table is taking shape with Mezőkövesd crashing the party at the top of the table with the usual suspects Ferencváros and Fehérvár. Last week we saw some highlight reel goals from Újpest's Donát Zsótér and Honvéd's Dániel Gazdag. We also witnessed the third manager of the season receive his marching orders. Which teams will make a statement before the players head into the last international break of the year?

Saturday, 9 November

Zalaegerszeg vs Mezőkövesd

ZTE Aréna, Zalaegerszeg (17:00)

Chris: ZTE continue to churn out results against the top teams in the league.  Zoran Lesjak’s last-gasp leveler against Fehérvár was a testimony to this team’s resiliency despite this being their first season in the top flight in eight years.  They have the sixth best goal-difference (+1) in the league despite being below the relegation line.  Manager Barna Dobos believes that their inability to hold a lead comes down to concentration, and they’ll need all they can get against an impressive Mezőkövesd side.  Left back Krisztián Tamás came off in the second half against Fehérvár with a leg injury and is questionable for this game.

Mezőkövesd are level on points at the top of the table after the first trip through the table.  The addition of central midfielder Aliaksandr Karnitski has brought some steel to the spine of Attila Kuttor’s squad and it’s shown as they have only conceded more than one goal in two league matches so far. They won the first meeting 1-0 back in August and will be hard pressed to match that in Zalaegerszeg.

Prediction: ZTE 1-1 Mezőkövesd

Paul:  Zalaegerszeg continue to play exciting football.  Goals, goals and more goals. Isn't Gergely Bobál playing inspired football lately? He is only 24 years old as is his twin brother Dávid. After little consideration and a gut feeling, I will do it and predict the home side to finally come though and earn three valuable points.

Mezőkövesd played a very competitive match against Fradi.  It was an entertaining match. The Men in Black (MIB) are an excellent side but this has the making of what we can in American Football a "trap game." Coming off a big match, they will make the long trip to Western Hungary and the boys of Zalaegerszeg will pull an upset. Upset Pick #1.

Prediction: ZTE 3-2 Mezőkövesd


Kaposvár vs MOL Fehérvár

Rákóczi Stadion, Kaposvár (17:00)

Chris: Kaposvár lost their fourth in a row last week in a free-flowing match against Újpest.  Goalkeeper Krisztián Pogacsics’ backup Balazs Slatka was tapped for three goals and looked fairly below average throughout as László Disztl’s side attempted to change their approach but were outclassed in the end.  Martin Ádám did score his team-leading fourth goal of the season, but it was his first since August.   

According to their official site Fehérvár will get team captain Roland Juhász back from injury this week as well as midfielder Anel Hadzic who has been out with a viral infection. Juhász’s return will be a welcome addition to a side who has conceded five goals in their last two league games.  Marko Nikolic’s side managed a fairly comfortable 4-2 scoreline in their first meeting this season at Sóstó Aréna, but with their injured returning to the ranks and Pogacsics possibly out for Kaposvár, it could get ugly here.

Prediction: Kaposvár 0-3 Fehérvár

Paul:  Kaposvár have lost four matches in a row but they are the underdogs, the minnows, that I root for in all sports.   Wouldn’t a win here be glorious and stop that four match losing streak? Stranger things have happened in Hungarian football!

Fehervar have not won in three matches.  Can they beat the newcomers? I am not so sure on this one, but I don’t have the guts to call for a home win.   A home win would not surprise me but I can’t predict it. Stranger things have happened.

Prediction:  Kaposvár 2-3 Fehérvár


Puskás Akadémia vs Újpest

Pancho Aréna, Felcsút (17:00)

Chris: Puskás lost their first competitive match since mid-August last week at home to Honvéd despite outplaying them.  They’ll be motivated to get back to winning ways and will feel confident against a Újpest side they unhinged in Budapest to start the season. Ezekiel Henty was on fire in that game, ripping apart the Lilák backline for two goals.  The temperamental striker is back in the lineup and in fine form.  Captain Roland Szolnoki is back in the squad after serving his one-match ban last week.

Last season Újpest boasted the best defense in the league for most of the season.  So far this season they’ve shipped 17 goals in 11 games which is fifth most conceded thus far.  They’ve allowed two goals against lower league Ajka in the cup and against bottom side Kaposvár last week.  On the bright side they’re back in the goals with eight in their last two after a stretch where they only scored once in three games.  Nebojsa Vignjevic hasn’t been  satisfied with the full product on the pitch but they’re inching closer with the right mentality and should be good enough for a point.   

Prediction: Puskás 2-2 Újpest

Paul:  Puskás lost a match!  The streak is broken. Despite all the numbers that say the home side should win, throw out the statistics when either of these two sides play. Who do I want to win? The squad in this paragraph. I love the manager, I love the stadium, and I love many of the players. When I love something, I lose. Sorry "Horny Boys." Note the aforementioned nickname is a word play on manager, Zsolt Hornyák.

In Hungarian football we are accustomed to bad news and bad news. Now we have the occasional good to go with the bad. The good news:  Újpest scored three goals and it was enough to defeat the newcomers. The bad news it was against Kaposvár who could have won the match.  Do I see three goals again? No way. But I do see an “upset of the week #2”.

Prediction:   Puskás 1-2 Újpest


Paks vs Kisvárda

Fehérvári úti Stadion, Paks (17:00)

Chris: Paks and manager Tomislav Sivics parted ways after last week’s defeat at Debrecen, leaving Paks equal on points with 11th place ZTE and perilously close to a relegation place.  Youth coach Gábor Osztermájer will take control of Saturday’s match against Kisvárda. Dániel Böde scored the lone goal in Paks defeat against Loki.  It was the first game back for the team captain after serving his three-game ban.

Kisvárda are another team who are going through a rough patch of form.  Despite controlling the game against Diósgyőr last week, they weren’t able to create and finish the dangerous chances that their opponents fashioned.  That was the difference.  Claudiu Bumba opened his account in what was arguably his best performance of the season.  Gheorghe Grozav’s current goal drought has affected the club’s fortunes but this is a chance for him to kickstart his production against a Paks side that’s out of sorts.

Prediction: Paks 1-2 Kisvárda  

Paul:  Another manager to say goodbye too as it was only a matter of time.  This Paks side is in chaos.  I have no idea who will manage or if it makes a difference.  I’ve stated on paper they look decent but I recant my statement.  Another loss in Paks. Please Aurél Csertői even if Paks ask you to return, just say no. They don't deserve you as a manager in my humble opinion.

Two losses in a row for Kisvárda so this match comes at a great time for them.  No, yes? But, they just were trampled last week by Diósgyőr? If they cannot defeat Paks this week, they don’t belong in the NBI, or do they?

Prediction:  Paks 1-2 Kisvárda


Honvéd vs Diósgyőr 

Uj Hidegkuti Nándor Stadion, Budapest (19:30)

Chris: Honvéd are looking much better in recent weeks as they’ve risen to fifth place with four wins and a draw in their last five.  Last week’s win over fancied Puskás with Giuseppe Sannino sitting in the stands showed that this team is on autopilot and the veteran presence of Davide Lanzafame (love him or hate him) continues to drive the success of this squad.  Dániel Gazdag’s lovely finish capped a fine team move for the winner last week.  Their attacking verve has only been eclipsed by their stellar defense - just two goals conceded in their last six competitive matches.

Diósgyőr have won two league games in a row under Tamás Feczkó and, all of a sudden, Miskolc are three points clear of the relegation line and look like they’re headed in the right direction.   This will be a tough match for Diósgyőr as they’ll have to attempt to break down Kispest’s five-man back line while keeping an eye on Lanzafame, Gazdag and Vadocz in attack.

Prediction: Honvéd 2-0 Diósgyőr

Paul: Honvéd have now won three matches in a row and four straight away matches as well.  The goals should come in nice numbers here but they may end up winning 1-0. Who knows?  This should be a Honvéd win either way.   Mr. Lanzafame scores a hat trick and a yellow card. For him business as usual.

Diósgyőr do not play well in Budapest.  Look it up. They often leave the capital after a sounding defeat.  It think it plays out here even with a new manager. Some things don't change. Please prove me wrong as my uncle lives in Miskolc so I have a special place for this club in my heart.

Prediction:  Honvéd 4-1 Diósgyőr


Sunday, 10 November

Debrecen vs Ferencváros

Nagyerdei Aréna, Debrecen (17:15)

Chris: Debrecen are now looking much better after a solid win over Paks without starting forwards Haruna Garba and Kevin Varga.  Loki will be without Varga for one more game as the winger sits out the final match of his three-game ban.  Let’s not forget the last time these two teams played when then-Debrecen substitute Dániel Zsori scored the goal that won him the FIFA Puskás Award for European Goal of the Season.  

Ferencváros continue to churn out results and have done well to stay among the leaders in NBI while also remaining competitive in the Europa League - giving themselves a chance to qualify for the knockout rounds with two matches to go.  The last time Fradi lost was at home to Ludogorets in early October.  Since then they’ve played their cards close to their chest and have opted to grind their way through the fixture list, saving their best performance for a key 2-1 win over Fehérvár two weeks ago.  They’ll be without Endre Botka who is banned after picking up five yellow cards, but are hoping that Lasha Dvali will be ready to go.

Prediction: Debrecen 1-1 Ferencváros

Paul: Wait this match is on Sunday? This match looked to be a fitting way to end round 12 but now who knows?  The leaky Debrecen defense will allow at least two goals while they will fail to score none. Where is Mr. Zsor to score goals? Kevin Varga? Ibrahima Sidibe at the age of 39 is still scoring goals for NBIII side DEAC with manager, Elemér Kondás.

Ferencváros are not scoring goals.  Hard fought match against CSKA Moscow.   I was able to watch some of it and the highlights on Russian TV, though my mother who overheard said it didn’t sound like Russian to her?  Who knows? That’s why football is the sport of the world. Can Fradi score? If they can't score against Debrecen I will be speechless. I would not mind this as I have a sore throat. Humans please rethink a flu shot. It is done to fight the flu but more often than not the humans get the flu. Side note....Fradi score more than a goal and take valuable points.

Prediction:  Debrecen 0-2 Ferencváros


NBI Round 11 Preview

Welcome to HungarianFootball.com's weekly preview where Chris Barrett and Paul Treso take a look at each game and give their predictions throughout the season.

Paul:  Chris, I can’t believe we are in November.  It should be a great football month with NBI  weekly matches, a huge National Team match against Wales, Hungarian Cup matches,the reopening Puskás Arena  and Ferencváros of course in the Europa League.  Back to NBI, we had a total of 13 goals scored in round 10, including a surprising scoreless draw between Újpest and Zalaegerszeg.  With Hungarians observing All Saints’ Day on November 1st , I thought it would be an appropriate time to honor the great Hungarian footballers of the past.  We all know about Ferenc Puskás & the Golden Team (Hungarian: Aranycsapat; also known as the Mighty Magyars), László Kubala, Flórián Albert etc..  In fact the list could go on and on. Let us also remember some players who passed away too young such as Miklós Fehér and Márton Fülöp.  Now on to round 11 and the league we love, the Hungarian first division.

Chris: This season's league is shaping up quite different from recent seasons. The top four have developed a seven-point buffer over the "also rans" so far, and there's little separating the teams in the larger group. Does the sentence "Mezőkövesd are tied for first place after eleven weeks" surprise you? It shouldn't.

Saturday, 2 November

Puskás Akadémia vs Honvéd

Pancho Aréna, Felcsút (14:30)

Chris: No one had a better cup round this week than Puskás as they put 15 goals past Maglód.  Ádám Gyurcsó led the way with five goals, and Nándor Tamás and Tamás Kiss each scored a hat trick.  This was on the heels of a tough away win at Kisvárda where Ezekiel Henty returned to the side to score his first goal since the first game of the season.  Confidence is high and Puskás return home where they’ve won their last three by two goals or more.

Honvéd had a tougher opponent in the cup and it showed as it took extra time to defeat Kazincbarcika. Bence Batik and Davide Lanzafame finally solved the NBII side in a 2-0 win.  Giuseppe Sannino’s side are in good league form and they’ve won their last three away games.  They also know that a defeat here will further separate them from the lead pack.  Batik and Lanza have been Kispest’s best players over the last four weeks with Batik leading the back line (three consecutive clean sheets) while Lanzafame continues to test the limits of the opposition’s defense (two goals in last two games).

Prediction: Puskás 2-1 Honvéd

Paul:  This match is one for the statisticians like Chris.  I will throw a few out there that are quite interesting.  Puskás have won their last two matches and their last  three home matches. Round 10 featured the mercurial Ezekial Henty scoring the winner against Kisvárda along with his usual yellow card.   Puskás (I refuse to use Chris’ team nickname) have an exciting club and this could well be a high scoring match depending on rainy  weather.

Honvéd are also in fine form and have won their last two matches as well.  On the flip side, they have won their last three away matches!. Something has to give here or does it?  Davide Lanzafame is in fine form and Amadou Moutari while still missing some chances repaid his manager’s faith and finally scored a goal against Kaposvár.  This match is too hard to pick so I will compromise and call for a draw.

Prediction: Puskás 1-1 Honvéd


Ferencváros vs Mezőkövesd

Groupama Aréna, Budapest (17:00)

Chris: Ferencváros continue to win despite not really dominating games.  Their 3-1 win in the Magyar Kupa against BKV Előre was enough to get by once again.  Tokmac, who left injured in last week’s win at MOL Fehérvár, was nowhere to be seen in their midweek match and he might be saved for their big Europa League match against CSKA on Thursday.  But this is huge match for both sides who are looking to solidify their place at the top.   

Mezőkövesd managed to squeak past NBIII side Sényő-Carnifex FC 2-1 in the cup with mostly a second-choice side.  Former Fradi player Erik Silye, who has featured in Attila Kuttor’s lineup in the last month or so, has some incentive the get one over on his old team.  Mezőkövesd have lost only twice this season so far, and both defeats have been at home.

Prediction: Ferencváros 2-2 Mezőkövesd

Paul:   For the third week in a row, we have a match featuring two top sides but this week it’s Ferencváros who are in a three way tie Mezőkövesd and Fehérvár albeit with a match in hand.   Groupama Arena should be standing room only with a great football atmosphere.   Fradi have not lost in four home matches this season and this should make it a fifth straight victory.  However, it will be a hard fought match.

Mezőkövesd trounced Debrecen at home and are p;roving to have many players capable of placing the ball in the back of the net.  They have not lost in any of their four away matches this season! We know anything is possible in the NBI but a win in Budapest would fit the modus operandi of Hungarian football.

Prediction:  Ferencváros 2-1 Mezőkövesd


Diósgyőr vs Kisvárda

Diósgyőri Stadion, Miskolc (17:00)

Chris: Diósgyőr’s Mirko Ivanovski finally opened his account last week, but also broke his nose in their win over Paks.  With the aid of a mask he should be ready to return.  DVTK had a fairly strong lineup in their midweek cup match which saw them win 3-0 over FC Dabas.  Ivanovski wasn’t in the lineup for that game but should be available to play against Kisvarda with a mask.

Kisvárda’s four defeats this season are against the top four sides and they’ve played all but one close.  Despite that, they’ve able to beat the rest of the teams in the peloton with Gheorghe Grozav (6 goals) leading the way.  Look for Claudiu Bumba to break out soon.  The Romanian midfielder has been steadily improving and I'm tipping him to open his account in this one.  

Prediction: Diósgyőr 1-2 Kisvarda

Paul:  This is somewhat an Eastern Hungarian derby featuring two of the three sides in that region.  Diósgyőr came up with their first away win of the season in defeating Paks by a goal.   Tamás Feczkó is building something in this squad and they return home to Miskolc on a high note.   I will buy into the hype and call for a rare “upset of the week” based on nothing but a gut instinct.

Kisvárda fought hard but lost a home match and were unable to score against a stout Puskás defense despite a wonderful atmosphere created by their supporters.  Stavros Tsoukalas is back and it is hoped he can regain his form of last season. Super substitute Hugo Seco was in the starting 11 last week but failed to show his past last match excitement.   Kisvárda has a spotty away record but may have a good number of their fervent fans to travel the 100 miles to Miskolc.

Prediction:   Diósgyőr 1-0 Kisvarda


Kaposvár vs Újpest

Rákóczi Stadion, Kaposvár (17:00)

Chris: Kaposvár tasted victory for the first time in a while this week. They got an injury time winner against Duna Aszfalt in the cup despite having to play the second half with only ten men. The win was their first in weeks as they prop up the NBI table with only six points so far.  Goalkeeper Krisztián Pogacsics was injured in the first half of last week’s 2-0 defeat against Honvéd and he didn’t factor in the cup so it’s quite possible that backup Balázs Slatka will be between the sticks again.

Two tough results in the past two weeks have put Újpest in an unflattering position as the season reaches the one-third mark.  Lilák are in 8th place, just two points clear of a relegation spot.  They managed to dominate the second half of the midweek cup match against Ajka but they needed to bring in the big guns to get the job done in what turned out to be a 5-2 win.  Manager Nebojsa Vignjevic was encouraged by the second half performance and he should feel good about his side ending a run of two games without scoring.

Prediction: Kaposvár 1-2 Újpest  

Paul:  Kaposvár have lost their last three matches and are falling further behind in their battle to stay in NBI   Goals are hard to come by as the newcomers have only scored a single goal in their last five matches and only five for the whole season!  They encounter a tough defensive club who are having major troubles scoring goals themselves. The question is can any goals be scored in Kaposvár in this match?  I see one goal perhaps being scored in all fairness.

Újpest are in a goal scoring drought and have not scored in their last two matches despite having a myriad of goal scoring opportunities.   Lilak have won every other away match this season and this will their match to win while scoring a single goal. The goal drought will be broken but not by too much.  As they say a win is a win.

Prediction:  Kaposvár 0-1 Újpest


Zalaegerszeg vs MOL Fehérvár 

ZTE Aréna, Zalaegerszeg (17:00)

Chris: ZTE put seven past old NBII foe Budaorsi FC in the Magyar Kupa to advance to the final 32 this week.  Forwards Eduvie Ikoba and Gergely Bobál each scored a brace as Dr. Barna Dobos’ side pulled away in the second half.  The return of right back Bendeguz Bolla from suspension will boost their back line ahead of what could turn out to be a very important match.  Zalaegerszeg have played well and despite winning just two games thus far and can steal a result at home.

Fehérvár were beaten at home by the champions last week and have fallen into a three-way tie at the top of the league.  They dominated Ferencváros but were unable to convert their numerous chances.  Márkó Futács production has dried up in the last two months and his level of play has fallen off considerably.  They’ve only managed to score three goals in their last four league matches and will find Zalaegerszeg to be more difficult than they realize.

Prediction: ZTE 1-1 Fehérvár

Paul: Zalaegerszeg earned a hard fought draw against Újpest.   Young goalkeeper, Patrik Demjén was superb and continued his good start to the season.  Zalaegerszeg have only won a single home match but should give Fehervar a good match.  As in all their marches, ZTE will fight to the end but lose by a single goal.

After a great start to the season, Fehervar  have leveled off in their play. The loss of two veteren players, Roland Juhász and Szabolcs Huszti, has really affected the play of the squad.  Maybe a return by Juhász will rejuvenate the squad?

Prediction:  ZTE 1-2 Fehérvár


Debrecen vs Paks

Nagyerdei Aréna, Debrecen (17:00)

Chris: Debrecen have lost four of their last five and manager András Herczeg has looked puzzled and out of ideas.  Kevin Varga’s absence was felt last week and now Loki will add suspended Haruna Garba to the list of players who are suspended.  

Another manager that looks like a deer in the headlights in recent weeks is Paks’ Tomislav Sivic. Like Debrecen, they have just one win surrounded by four defeats in the league, but they will get forward Dániel Böde back along with defender Andras Fejes from suspension.  Paks will still find it difficult in Debrecen.

Prediction: Debrecen 1-0 Paks

Paul: Debrecen lacked any offensive firepower in losing by two goals to Mezőkövesd.  Their defense continues to look confused and conceded three goals last match night.  The loss of Kevin Varga was showed in the attack and he will miss this match as well.  Fortunately, they are back at home which should inspire the side to a victory.  András Herczeg attempts to field a solid starting 11 in both offense and especially defense.

Paks have lost their last two matches and continued their poor play in losing to Diósgyőr Dániel Böde returns after his red card ban and hopes to reignite his new club.  It has been a difficult season for Böde and Paks alike. Things don’t look to improve this week as Paks lose their third away match in a row of the season.   How soon until they have a new manager?

Prediction:  Debrecen 2-1 Paks


Top Five Hungarians to Watch

(by Bence Bocsak for HungarianFootball.com)

If you weren't already aware, Hungary are currently competing at the U17 World Cup in Brazil with one of the strongest and most promising youth sides they have assembled to date. 

They will be hoping to emulate the feat of the U20 side who finished third in the World Cup exactly ten years ago, but they have some work to do after earning just one point in their first two matches. They have a vital group match against Ecuador on Friday.

Here are Hungary’s five best players to watch during the finals in Brazil. 

Mihaly Kata 

Club: MTK 

Position: Central Midfielder 

Kata is one of the most experienced member of the side having already established himself a regular for MTK’s senior side this season at just 17 years of age. 

He is definitely the one to watch in Brazil. He has great composure on the ball, fantastic vision and reads the game incredibly well. For someone so young it is clear he is blessed with an astute footballing brain. 

He was key in breaking up the attacks against Spain, Belgium and Portugal during the European Championships and his level headedness and strong mettle will be needed in the World Cup finals too. 

It is surprising that unlike some of his team mates, Kata hasn’t made the move to Western Europe just yet, though if he replicates his form from the European Championships he will undoubtedly have a fair share of suitors come after November. 

Andras Nemeth  

Club: Genk 

Position: Striker 

The fast and agile striker was Hungary’s best player at the U17 Championships earlier this year netting 3 times in 5 games. 

Originally born in Cape Town to a South African mother and a Hungarian father, he grew up in Hungary but was quickly snapped up Belgian giants Genk. 

Still just 16 years of age, Nemeth has already netted a hat-trick for Genk’s U21 side and opened his account for their U19 team at the UEFA Youth League against Napoli. 

He will probably miss the fixtures against Liverpool due to the finals, where he will be hoping to demonstrate his lethal finishing and rapid change of pace once more to dazzle opposing defenders and help Hungary qualify out of their group. 

Nemeth is at one of the best academies in the world for his footballing development right now and he is Hungary’s most promising talent. 

Krisztian Hegyi 

Club: West Ham

Position: Goalkeeper 

He is a towering figure at 1.93 metres already and an excellent shot-stopper. Set to be one of the most talented goalkeepers of his age group. His great reflexes were crucial throughout Hungary’s journey at the U17 European Championships in Ireland. He was especially key to help secure victory against Russia and Portugal where his saves often kept Hungary in the game. 

He moved to West Ham in April 2019 and has quickly established himself as the number one goalkeeper for the Hammer’s U18 side. 

He will be hoping to avoid the last Hungarian Peter Kurucz’s fate to play for West Ham who never managed to make a breakthrough with the English side. 

But he has all the talent and skill to make it far in the game and Hungary will be relying on him to keep the goals out when the going gets tough in Brazil. 

Samuel Major 

Club: Red Bull Salzburg 

Position: Central Midfielder 

A versatile player who was one of the creative sparks for Hungary at the U17 Euros. He can play in a central midfield role, on the wing and has recently featured as a right back for Salzburg’s U19 side against Liverpool in the UEFA Youth Cup. 

He has great ball control, excellent vision and reading of the game. He can also strike the ball well from distance. He showed his cool in Ireland at the U17 Euros earlier this year with a well struck penalty against Russia to help Hungary secure victory. 

He netted twice more in penalty shoot-outs against Spain and Belgium, meaning he will be a reliable from the spot if Hungary are awarded a penalty. 

He is at Salzburg where youth are given a regular chance and Major is making good progress. The Hungarian of course has Szoboszlai to look up to and he will be hoping to follow suit of his fellow compatriot in a few years time. A good World Cup performance may just be the catalyst. 

Akos Zuigeber 

Club: MTK 

Position: Winger 

One of the highest rated prospects still plying his trade in Hungary. Zuigeber was instrumental in helping Hungary qualify for the European Championships with some well struck late goals. 

His goal scoring record at U17 level is prolific having struck 8 times in 11 games. 

He is quick, direct and plays with real power in possession. His finishing is lethal but he is also clever in the final third and often plays some astute passes to create chances for his team-mates. 

With an incredible record for MTK’s youth team having scored 263 goals in 251 games, he has already become a key member of their senior side. Zuigeber has played 4 times for the club’s first team this season and scored twice whilst also giving out two assists. 

He will still only be 16 at the World Cup finals and with a strong performance it is inevitable top European clubs will be making moves to secure his services. 

(edited by Chris Barrett)


NBI Round 10 Preview

Welcome to HungarianFootball.com's weekly preview where Chris Barrett and Paul Treso take a look at each game and give their predictions throughout the season. We're approaching the one-third mark of the NBI season and this week has a number of tantalizing matchups on offer.

Paul:  Chris, there were ONLY a total of 13 goals scored in round 9 with five sides failing to score a goal.  Despite this, it’s an exciting time in Hungarian football right now. The U-17 team opens up their World Cup play Saturday against Nigeria with Australia and Ecuador also in their group.  Over 25,000 tickets have already been for the grand opening of the rebuilt Puskás Aréna with a  match against Uruguay on November 15th.  But, our focus is back on NB1 football where it’s taken 10 rounds but we finally have our marquee match:  Fehérvár against Ferencváros.  Even better yet, the match is featured on Sunday all by itself!

Chris: Yeah, this is an exciting weekend for Hungarian football. The U17s have done well to reach the World Cup and we'll all be watching closely to see if they can announce to the world a new "golden generation" of Magyars. We'll have our eye on the youngsters, but for now we will keep the league in focus as the top four look to break off from the rest of the league. Lets go!

Saturday, 26 October

Mezőkövesd vs Debrecen

Városi Stadion, Mezőkövesd (14:30)

Chris: The team who looked to be punching above their weight early in the season are holding their own against the big boys.  Mezőkövesd weren’t too far off in a goalless draw against Fehérvár last week.  Right back Dániel Farkas returned to the lineup and impressed along with Erik Silye on the left.  They book-ended a solid back four which shut down the highest scoring offense in the league but are taking on another offensive juggernaut in Debrecen.

Despite having Kevin Varga sent off last week, Debrecen pilfered a home win to end a run of four consecutive defeats.  This team has been quite entertaining at both ends this season and Andras Herczeg will have to address his back line before it’s too late.

Prediction: Mezőkövesd 1-0 Debrecen

Paul:  Mezőkövesd showed they will be a side to contend with this season after a hard fought draw with Fehérvár.   I really like their style of play and their fans are getting behind their club.   Tamás Cseri is so much fun to watch and does a great job of scoring and setting up his teammates  for great chances. Mezőkövesd played well enough to win against the league leaders, and should have taken the match.    Once again Mezőkövesd will outplay their opponents but another strong goalkeeper, Sándor Nagy, will deny them from the three points.

Debrecen broke through and ended their 4 match losing streak with a win over Diósgyőr.  They were fortunate to take the three points and will be without Kevin Varga for 3 matches due to his foolish red card.  Debrecen has lost their last two away matches after an initial away win against Honvéd.  Loki should lose this much but somehow, they will rally in this match to overcome the loss of their young playmaker.  Debrecen will leave Mezőkövesd with a well earned point.

Prediction: Mezőkövesd 2-2 Debrecen


Újpest vs Zalaegerszeg

Illovszky Rudolf Stadion, Budapest (17:00)

Chris: Újpest were unfortunate to not get a result in the derby last week.  Lilák were the better team by far in terms of creating chances but they just couldn’t bundle one of them over the line.  They were very good defensively, bossed the play, but the one real chance that Fradi got was well-taken by Franck Boli and the beat goes on.  This is a chance to turn that frustration into a result.   

ZTE were resilient in the first half last week against Honvéd but were outclassed in the second half with as they were opened up again and again.  It was only good fortune that they didn’t lose by a bigger margin and will have to step things up against a Újpest team that looked good in defeat.

Prediction: Újpest 2-1 ZTE

Paul:   Újpest dominated the derby against Ferencváros.  They had so  many chances but somehow failed to score and lost.   It was a very exciting derby but a frustrating one for Lilak fans.   I have to think the goals will come here but at this point, your guess is as good as mine.   Újpest have to hit the back of the net sometime right?

Zalaegerszeg  as their opponents, are doing everything but win their matches.  They have not been routed in any match yet this season and are just missing those finer points of the game to turn those draws into wins.  I would flip a coin for this match but I can’t find out with three sides. In a very close match, I will go with the home side to win by a goal in an entertaining match.

Prediction:  Újpest 3-2 ZTE


Honvéd vs Kaposvár

Uj Hidegkuti Nándor Stadion, Budapest (17:00)

Chris: Honvéd really came together last week against ZTE in the second half but spurned a number of opportunities that seemed almost easier to score.  If Amadou Moutari had his GPS on last week he could have found the back of the net on at least two occasions but he just didn’t have it. Of course it was Davide Lanzafame who bailed them out with the winner despite missing an earlier penalty.

Kaposvár were at their worst last week in a home defeat against Kisvárda.  Despite getting the advantage in possession, Kaposvár have struggled to create quality chances.  This will be a big test as they must find a way to stop a Honvéd team that’s finding their groove.  

Prediction: Honvéd 3-1 Kaposvár

Paul:  Davide Lanzafame is back doing what he does best, scoring goals and causing controversy.  He missed a penalty and then scores a header to win the match. Whether you like him or not, Lanzafame causes great excitement in NB1 football.  Honvéd have yet to win at “home” but that will end with a comfortable win. Several goals will be scored and no doubt Lanzafame will be involved one way or another.

Kaposvár have now lost two matches in a row and find themselves in Budapest against an improving opponent.   They have lost four out of their five away matches with their only win coming against Debrecen. Kaposvár are proving to be a competitive side despite being in most matches the inferior squad on paper.   László Disztl was very frustrating in the calls going against his side which I admit have been apparent in a good number of matches.

Prediction:   Honvéd 3-1 Kaposvár


Kisvárda vs Puskás Akadémia

Várkert Stadion, Kisvárda (17:00)

Chris: Welcome back László Dajka!  Last season’s manager ended a run of three defeats in his first game back in charge after László Miriuta was relieved of his duties before last round. Captain Lucas and Gheorghe Grozav provided the sparks last week, and with central midfielder Stavros Tsoukalas returning from suspension this week they’ll be confident that they can return to a better run of form.

Puskás are another side that have shown they’re not a one-hit wonder this season.  After dismantling Paks in Felcsút  last week they are comfortably in fourth place among a lead pack that’s slowly distancing themselves from the mid-table pack.  Ádám Gyurcscó added two more goals to give him four on the season in just five appearances. This won’t be an easy task but I think they can get a result.

Prediction: Kisvárda 2-2 Puskás  

Paul:  Who would have thought  in round 10 this match would feature two sides in the top half of the table?   Kisvárda took care of business in defeating Kaposvár by a goal.   Lucas played a good match and it would be nice to see him in good form once again.  I am anxious to see how the clubs responds to having László Dajka back on the bench.   I am inspired just by listening to Dajka’s post game interviews.

Puskás easily dispatched Diósgyor in scoring four goals at home.  Ádám Gyurcso is scoring goals in bunches and the club would be wise to quickly to sign him to the club permanently.   With Gyurcso and David Vanacek playing so well, who needs Ezekial Henty? With neither side showing dominating home or away form, I will play it safe and call for a draw.

Prediction:  Kisvárda 2-2 Puskás


Paks vs Diósgyőr 

Paksi Stadion, Paks (17:00)

Chris: Tomislav Sivic’s Paks side suffered a third defeat in their last four games.  Dániel Böde will finish his three-match suspension this week, but defender András Fejes will join him in the stands after seeing red last week as well. It’s difficult to see them pulling out of this even at home, but Diósgyőr are a team they can beat if they can get some service to János Hahn.

Diósgyőr are a horrible team away from home.  They’ve lost all four away games, conceding 10 goals.  They’re repeating last season’s form where they lost 11 of 17 away games and conceded a league leading 41 goals on the road.  After losing to Debrecen last week despite having a man advantage for the last 30 minutes, Diósgyőr need someone to step up in the attacking third and get things done.  With Mirko Ivanovski, Haris Tabakovic, Rui Redro and Florent Hasani all looking for their first goal of the season, something will have to break for them eventually. 

Prediction: Paks 1-1 Diósgyőr

Paul: Paks are a very underperforming side.  On paper they have good players but it doesn’t translate on the pitch.   Not sure who is to blame? Tomislav Sivic was very frustrated with his club in his post match interview last week.   I feel his pain and he stated if things don’t change they will have to go to church and pray. His side should have enough to earn a win here.  It’s about time for Dániel Böde to show something and score some goals.

Diósgyőr were unlucky not to earn at least a point in their last match against Debrecen.  They had so many chances and played well but perhaps this is something to build on. Tamás Feczkó is doing his best to mold something of this side and it's coming along slowly.   They have lost all four of their away matches but remove their Fehérvár match and the matches have been close.

Prediction:  Paks 2-1 Diósgyőr


Sunday, 27 October

MOL Fehérvár vs Ferencváros

MOL Sóstó Aréna, Székesfehérvár (17:15)

Chris: Fehérvár played to a goalless standoff against early title challenger Mezőkövesd last week and they’ll be looking to remain atop the league as they entertain Ferencváros at Sóstó Aréna this week.  Marko Nikolic started a younger back line against Mezőkövesd with no Roland Juhász or Stopira in the starting XI.  

Ferencváros must be feeling on top of the world after riding their luck in their last two games.  First, they won the derby against Újpest despite being played off the pitch, and then they organized a smash and grab in Moscow in the Europa League to keep them in the thick of a top two spot in their group.  With a Magyar Kupa midweek match ahead of them and the exhaustion of a close game in Russia behind them, I think Fradi will be off a bit in Székesfehérvár this week.

Prediction: Fehérvár 2-1 Ferencváros

Paul: Back to back matches for the leaders against the second place side in the NB1. Fehervar are now on top of Ferencvaros by only 3 points and having played an extra match.   Adrian Rus started for the injured Roland Juhász but it is still not known if the captain will be fit for this “big” match.   Perhaps Mol was looking forward to this match and as a result were lacking a bit of concentration in their last match?   They were not quite clicking on all cylinders against Mezőkövesd.  I am hoping for a very good match but we all may be let down perhaps?

Ferencváros were outplayed in their last two matches against  Újpest and CSKA Moscow but came out on top both times.  A combination of luck and excellent goalkeeping by Dénes Dibusz.   Endre Botka has taken advantage of injuries and has regained his form of old.   @MilitarIvan7 made a good point that Fradi play a deep counter-attacking game in their European matches  and a high intensity pressing style in NBI. Which side and style of play will we see here?  Let’s say somewhere between the two and a draw at best.

Prediction:  Fehérvár 1-1 Ferencváros


NBI Round 9 Preview

Welcome to HungarianFootball.com's weekly preview where Chris Barrett and Paul Treso take a look at each game and give their predictions throughout the season. Read on for all the latest news for each match this week.

Paul:  Chris, we are back after another mini vacation.  We had a total of 17 goals scored including the surprising scoreless draw between Honvéd and Ferencváros.  Three ties, including the wild 6 goal affair between Kisvárda and Zalaegerszeg, rounded out the week.  Vasile Miriuta has the distinction of being the 2nd manager to be let go this season.  Perhaps criticizing the ownership publicly was not a good idea? I’m excited to see NBI back, let’s go!

Chris: Two derbies and a top of the the table clash await us this week among a full slate of games. With only four points separating 5th through 12th place there's plenty up for grabs as we reach the quarter mark of the season. Nothing can be bigger than this season's first derby to cap the day!

Saturday, 19 October

Mezőkövesd vs MOL Fehérvár

Városi Stadion, Mezőkövesd (17:00)

Chris: Who would have thought that Mezőkövesd would be sitting in second place in October but they have risen to the occasion this season.  Midfielder Zsombor Berecz is featuring for this team on the rise and he’ll face his former side on Saturday.  On loan from Fehérvár, Berecz has been a key player so far this season for Mezőkövesd, playing alongside Tamas Cseri and Aliaksandr Karnitski in what has looked like a very effective midfield.

Fehérvár are coming off a 2-1 friendly win over Vasas during the international break.  Dániel Zsóri and Danilo Pantic both featured giving us a better look at the youngsters, while Funsho Bamgboye and Ivan Petriak got on the score sheet.  With Szabolcs Huszti out for an extended period it looks like it will open more time for Ákos Elek to return to a bigger role.

Prediction: Mezőkövesd 1-1 Fehérvár

Paul:  Mezőkövesd rebounded in their last match with a nice win over Újpest.  Now they are back home where they have lost their last 2 matches.  This is their first real test of the season and we will see if they are Europa League contenders or pretenders?  Mezőkövesd did make a brilliant signing of Richárd Guzmics recently.  He is one of my favorites and hopefully consistent playing time will get him back on a national team that desperately needs solid defenders.   Check out the goal of the week by Zsombor Berecz. This is a match that I am really looking forward to watching.

A match between the top two sides of NBI so far!   Fehérvár have won all three of their away matches. Armin Hodzic and Márkó Futács provide a solid 1-2 scoring punch in the attack.  I am still dumbfounded as to why Futács wasn’t called up recently for the National Team matches but that is another story. Will Fehérvár show the up-and-comers that they are the team to beat in NBI?  Anything can happen here and this will be the match I am following most on Saturday.

Prediction: Mezőkövesd 1-1 Fehérvár


Puskás Akadémia vs Paks

Pancho Aréna, Felcsút (17:00)

Chris: Unbeaten in the last six, Puskás are enjoying life among the top four thanks in part to a defense bolstered by Thomas Meißner and Kamen Hadzhiev.  Goals are coming from multiple sources which make this a team to take seriously.  Zsolt Hornyak’s side has started better than most thought and there no reason they can’t continue this form against an inconsistent Paks side.   

Dániel Böde will serve his second of a three-match ban this week.  The veteran forward has just one goal in seven games and the frustration is there.  He doesn’t have the service he had at Ferencváros and is still adjusting.  His absence alongside the injured Laszlo Bartha leaves a thin attacking corps heading to Felcsút.

Prediction: Puskás 2-0 Paks

Paul:   Puskás have not lost in their last 5 matches and are now up to the 4th spot on the table.   They did not look sharp against Diósgyor in some fine Hungarian fall weather.  Other than a loss to Fehérvár they have looked good at home.  Paks should be the right medicine to get them back to their winning ways.

Paks did not look too sharp in defeating Kaposvár at home.  In truth, at the end of the season, three points is three points.  If they wish to stay up in the NBI they must win their home matches and take the occasional away points from matches like these.  I still need to see more consistency from this side before I can predict some away points for them. Note to the manager, please start Mohamed Remili as he deserves it and it may help you from losing your job!

Prediction:  Puskás 3-2 Paks


Kaposvár vs Kisvárda

Rákóczi Stadion, Kaposvár (17:00)

Chris: Kaposvár’s narrow defeat at Paks last round has them at the bottom of the table.  They have two wins this season and both have been clean sheet victories against struggling sides (Diósgyőr and Debrecen).

Kisvárda can be considered a struggling side as they’re winless in their last four and dropped points at home against 9-man ZTE.  They also parted ways with manager László Miriuta and will welcome back László Dajka who managed last season alongside coach János Kocsis.  The two will be interim until a new manager is appointed.  Midfielder Stavros Tsoukalas will serve the final game of his three-match ban.  Dajka is an inspiring figure at this club and got the most out of them last season.  I expect them to rise to the occasion of a new start this week. 

Prediction: Kaposvár 1-2 Kisvárda

Paul:  Kaposvár are back at home where they have only taken 3 of the possible 9 points.  These are the matches that they must win if they wish to stay up in the NBI next season.   A home match and an opponent with a recently fired manager should equal a home win but that will be more difficult than it appears.

Kisvárda find themselves mid-table and this somehow resulted in their manager being fired. János Kocsis (not familiar with him)  takes over for Vasile Mariuta on an interim basis.  László Dajka is the manager on paper due to his having his proper qualifications but all decisions will be made by Kocsis.  The squad should come into this with a chip on their shoulder after drawing in questionable fashion against Zalaegerszeg.

Prediction:   Kaposvár 1-3 Kisvárda


Zalaegerszeg vs Honvéd

ZTE Stadion, Zalaegerszeg (17:00)

Chris: ZTE registered a hard-fought draw in Kisvárda last round and have developed a reputation of battling in each and every game.  All four of their defeats have been by a one goal, and they’ve scored three or more goals in three matches so far.  Benjamin Babati returned to the lineup last round and scored his first of the season, making it eight different players now who have scored for Zalaegerszeg.

Honvéd played to goalless draw against Ferencváros and will be looking to get back on the score sheet this week against a ZTE side who will be missing two key defenders.  This is a team that is still coming together and seems to be leaning on individual creativity instead of cohesive team.  They’ve won their only two games of the season away from home but not here.

Prediction: ZTE 2-2 Honvéd 

Paul:  Zalaegerszeg  play exciting, attacking football as evidenced by their last match against Kisvárda.  They are not one to back down against any side. Zalaegerszeg are getting accustomed to NBI football and if they can continue their improvement then relegation will not be a concern for the newcomers.  They have incorporated a good mix of young and experienced players for their initial NBI season. This will be an entertaining match though a total of six goals again would be expecting too much here.

I can’t think of the last time Honvéd played a scoreless draw. Maybe the defense is stabilizing finally?   The club is coming along nicely and manager Giuseppe Sannino has assembled a squad that has great potential.  We will have a Davide Lanzafame sighting in this match with two goals to help Honvéd secure their third straight away win.

Prediction:  ZTE 1-2 Honvéd


Debrecen vs Diósgyőr 

Nagyerdei Stadion, Debrecen (17:00)

Chris: Debrecen’s András Herczeg seems to have no way to remedy the only NB1 defense that has yet to keep a clean sheet this season.  Loki are on a run of four consecutive defeats and have shipped seven goals in their last three.  I keep saying that it’s only a matter of time until they turn things around but another defeat this week and they could have the beginning of a crisis on their hands.

Diósgyőr have only produced six goals in eight games so far.  So playing against one of the leakiest back lines in recent weeks might be a boost for Tamás Feczkó’s lethargic attack, but who will step up and make it happen?

Prediction: Debrecen 3-1 Diósgyőr

Paul: This is not a typo, Debrecen have lost 4 straight matches and now find themselves closer to the relegation zone than my predicted top 3 finish.  The week off could not have come at a better time for manager,András Herczeg to restore some confidence in his players. In all fairness, Debrecen did look better in their last match against  Fehérvár and were good enough to earn at least a point.  It’s time for them to stop the bleeding and they will with a convincing victory here.

Diósgyor looked much improved in earning a home draw against Puskás .  Manager Tamás Feczkó had another week to work with his new squad so while the results may not show in this match, they are on the right path.  They will find themselves against a club in a rough patch and the goal gates will open here.

Prediction:  Debrecen 4-1 Diósgyőr


Ferencváros vs Újpest

Groupama Aréna, Budapest (19:30)

Chris: Sergei Rebrov has made it clear that he’ll be starting his best lineup in the derby despite a trip to Moscow to face CSKA in the Europa League next Thursday.   Ferencváros were held without a goal for the first time all season last round against Honvéd.  

Újpest would love to end a run of 14 matches against Ferencváros without a win as they visit Groupama Aréna this week.   A big part of that will be choosing the right goalkeeper.  Filip Pajovic has been benched that last three games as Dávid Banai has been selected in front of him, but this might see Pajovic returning as he brings the experience of playing with the intensity of this match.  It also looks unlikely that Likák will have Róbert Litaszki available.

Prediction: Ferencváros 2-1 Újpest

Paul: Another derby for the 2nd straight week for Fradi,  but this is the “big one” against eternal rivals Újpest.  Let's hope this one has a bit more excitement than their last match - a lifeless, 0-0 draw against Honvéd. I can’t imagine that happening here in a packed house at Groupama Arena.   No excuses for Ferencváros as they have no mid-week Europa League matches to blame so they will come out firing on all cylinders.

Újpest are like that ex-girlfriend who we break up with but then they come back and we believe that things will be different and better.  In the words of Paul McCartney after the breakup of the Beatles, “you can’t reheat a souffle.” I really, really want to see a good, exciting match but I sadly do not.  Finally, a link for a real taste of the derby.

Prediction:  Ferencváros 3-1 Újpest