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


NBI Round 8 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, what an interesting round 7 with no draws and three away wins.     There were a total of 15 goals scored in round 7. With Mol Fehérvár’s loss to Újpest, there are no longer any undefeated sides in the NBI.  Ferencváros and Mol Fehérvár occupy the top two spots to no one’s  surprise and it figures to be a battle between the two for the championship.  Everything else is up in the air at the moment. Kaposvár may not be the easy relegation pick I predicted at the start of the season.  This is the last week before yet another break for international matches. Please be on the lookout for upcoming  podcasts from Chris and I concerning everything about Hungarian football.

Chris: Better late than never. It's been a hectic week. Looking forward to getting back on the air with the podcasts.

Saturday, 5 October

Újpest vs Mezőkövesd

Illovszky Rudolf Stadion, Budapest (14:30)

Chris: Újpest look like a completely different team after dismantling Fehérvar last week.  Róbert Feczesin’s work rate and mentality seems to be affecting the team and manager Nebojša Vignjevic has taken notice.  All three players that joined a couple of weeks ago (including Jonathan Heris and Antonio Perosevic) have really contributed in positive ways.

Mezőkövesd fell asleep at the wrong times last week and Honvéd made them pay with their second defeat of the season.  The return of Aliaksandr Karnitski from suspension will improve their midfield, but an invigorated Újpest attack will be a handful for them.

Prediction: Újpest 2-1 Mezőkövesd

Paul:  Újpest looked sharp in their upset win over Mol Fehérvár.  The Lilak featured a crisp, compact passing game.   Dávid Banai provided solid goalkeeping and made the team of the week for round 7. Róbert Fecszesin gets a National Team call up after a nearly 8 year absence.   A comment on his play or the current supply of quality Hungarian strikers? Krisztián Simon is rounding into form after his injury problems of the last few years.   With all this praise, the Lilak continue their recent good run with a victory.

Is Mezőkövesd coming back to the pack after loses in two of their last three matches?  They dominated possession 57-43% in their match against Honvéd but as we all know this beautiful game is played for goals.  Mezőkövesd have won all three of their away matches but streaks are meant to be broken as is their away record.

Prediction: Újpest 2-0 Mezőkövesd


Kisvárda vs Zalaegerszeg

Várkerti Stadium, Kisvárda (17:00)

Chris: After suffering their third defeat on the trot, Kisvárda are looking far more ordinary these days.  Winners of three of their first four, Vasile Miriuta’s side have scored only one goal in their last three as teams are keying in on danger man Gheorghe Grozav.  Midfielder Stavros Tsoukalas continues his red-card ban and will be missed.   

ZTE saw Zoltan Stieber pick up his first NBI goal last week in a sensational win against Paks. They are playing good football and have turned heads this season with their competitiveness all over the pitch. András Radó leads the team in offensive production and was at his best against Paks.

Prediction: Kisvárda 1-2 Zalaegerszeg

Paul:   Kisvárda have lost three matches in a row but were the better side and should have taken the three points against Ferencváros.  Other than a loss to Mezőkövesd, they have won their other two home matches.  Kisvárda will get back on the right track this week with big matches from Gheorghe Grozav and Felipe.

Zalaegerszeg are looking very good lately and dispatched Paks with ease.   András Radó was the player of the week and may have found a home with the newcomers.  Zoltán Stieber also is back to form with a goal and an assist last week.  It would be nice to see him regain his pre-Euro 2106 form. I am still waiting to see improved away performances before I can trust Zalaegerszeg on the road.

Prediction:  Kisvárda 2-1 Zalaegerszeg


Paks vs Kaposvár

Paksi Stadion, Paks (17:00)

Chris: Paks have conceded seven goals in their last two games, and have not scored in their last two home games, albeit against the top two teams in the league.  Dániel Böde scored his first of the season last week before being sent off at Zalaegerszeg and he won’t factor in this one. With László Bartha now out with an achilles injury until the spring it makes thing even more difficult for the Nuclear Team.

Kaposvár have won two of their last three and have really shortened the gap between the bottom and mid-table.  Martin Ádám gives the promoted side a legit scoring threat 

Prediction: Paks 1-1 Kaposvár

Paul:  Paks have now lost two matches in a row and have established themselves as a possible relegation contender.  Dániel Böde had an odd match last week  that began with a goal but ended with a red card which eliminates him from this match.  They have not scored a goal in their last two home matches but this is the type of match where János Hahn and scores multiple goals.   Should he not earn a national team call up?

Kaposvár looked good in defeating Diósgyor for their first home win of the season.  They catch a Paks squad in disarray and could earn a result here.  Last week Kaposvár had three players by the name of “Nagy” in the starting eleven with another Nagy on the bench.  Just a useless piece of information that caught my eye. Full disclosure, I had this match as a draw but upon further review changed it.  Based on my American Football experience, I’ve learned to go with your first choice. But I won’t!

Prediction:   Paks 4-2 Kaposvár


Diósgyőr vs Puskás Akadémia

Diósgyőri Stadion, Miskolc (17:00)

Chris: Diósgyőrare in trouble as they continue to tailspin at the bottom of the table with dangerous Puskas Akademia. New manager Tamás Feczkó is hoping to pick up his second win in three games with DVTK but they’ll need to find someone to score some goals.

Puskás are beginning to look more and more like a team with intentions of a top three finish after their last two games (both victories).  They’re also undefeated in their last four and should feel confident against Diósgyőr.

Prediction: Diósgyőr 1-2 Puskás Akadémia 

Paul:  Diósgyor are a mess right now and it will take new manager Tamás Feczkó some time to possibly wave his magic wand.  For the time being, their poor play continues as they come into this match having lost 4 out of their last 5 matches.  Even the great fans of Miskolc will not be enough to energize the home side to gain any points in this home match.

With all their recent foreign signings, I counted 6 Hungarians in the starting 11 for Puskás in their last match against Debrecen .  Zsolt Nagy is playing well and caught my eye against Debrecen.  Ádám Gyurcsó has been a valuable addition and scored two goals with one being an early Christmas present from a Debrecen defender.  Ezekial Henty was nowhere to be found last week but this club is rolling along quite nicely without him. They will leave Miskolc with three valuable away points.

Prediction:  Diósgyőr 0-2 Puskás Akadémia


MOL Fehérvár vs Debrecen 

MOL Aréna Sóstó, Székesfehérvár (19:30)

Chris: Fehérvár were humbled at home last week as Újpest ended their perfect start to the season, beating them 2-0.  Veteran midfielder Szabolcs Huszti looks to be set for an extended time on the sideline after undergoing knee surgery this week. This is still a very good team and it will be interesting to see who replaces Huszti in midfield.  Can this be the break for Chelsea loanee Danilo Pantic?

Debrecen proved just how poor they are defensively, and they continue to struggle to get results in recently weeks because of it.  If their attack can wake up and keep up with Fehervar they could have a chance here, but I think this is too much for them.

Prediction: Fehérvár 2-1 Debrecen

Paul: Fehérvár were clearly outplayed in their first loss of the season last week.   The highlight of the match was legendary goalkeeper Peter Disztl catching Krisztián Simon’s shot in the crowd.  He still has those magic  hands that saved a PK against Manchester United  in the 1984 UEFA Cup en route to a finals appearance.  Szabolcs Huszti is out for half a year after injuring his knee in the last match.  I can’t see Fehérvár losing a second straight home match and they will win a tightly contested match.

Debrecen have now lost three straight matches and are not looking good on either side of the ball.  They could have scored five goals last week but in a reoccuring NBI theme, they lacked the final finishing touches.   Playing the league leaders is not an ideal situation for them but they will give a good showing losing on a late goal in the final moments of the match.  They will get it right and while not winning this match, they will make a good showing nonetheless.

Prediction:  Fehérvár 2-1 Debrecen


Sunday, 6 October

Honvéd vs Ferencváros

Uj Hidegkuti Nándor Stadion, Budapest (16:00)

Chris: Honvéd took advantage of a couple lapses in concentration last week and emerged with their second win in three games.  If Davide Lanzafame is fit, this will be the perfect game for him to make an impact - against his former club.  Lanza always seems to play better with a chip on his shoulder.  

Ferencváros’ disastrous defeat at home against Ludogorets has exposed what we’ve seen sporadically throughout the season.  Despite their depth in talent in all positions, Fradi are susceptible to the counter attack.  Rotation will be light here as the international break is next weekend.  Isael is available after serving this three match ban.

Prediction: Honvéd 2-2 Ferencváros

Paul: Honvéd really impressed me last week in their win over Mezőkövesd.   Once again, Ben Hatira continues to play well as is Krisztián Vadócz.  Nice job by Italian manager, Giuseppe Sannino, whom I would have fired already.  The management believed in him and now it’s paying off and showing in the team’s play.  I sure hope Davide Lanzafame plays as it would only add to the drama. In the game of the week, I cannot convince myself predict a Honvéd win just quite yet.  But I do see 2 goals by Lanzafame if he plays.

Ferencváros come into the match after having played Thursday but is of course a “Budapest derby” and they should come out strong.  The Fradi fans should make this a home atmosphere and play the role of the “twelfth man.” Fradi will come in mad, aggressive and overwhelm the home side.  Can Leandro score another goal once again?

Prediction:  Honvéd 2-3 Ferencváros


Szoboszlai - herald of a new golden age

by Bence Bocsak (@BenBocsak)

Often in life football wonderkids arrive out of nowhere and take the world stage by storm. Sometimes they crumble under the pressure and never fulfill their full potential. Other times, they are over-hyped and falsely expected to perform beyond their means. And, very rarely, they go on to trump peoples’ wildest expectations and achieve absolute football stardom. 

Hungarian Dominik Szoboszlai will hope to be among the latter in the promising football career which awaits him. While Szoboszlai’s name may be a newcomer onto the world stage, to Hungarians it has been a name which has been touted as the country’s saviour for the last few years. 

Szoboszlai’s fledgling career begun in the academies of Hungary. His father Zsolt Szoboszlai was an ex-footballer who was forced to retire after a brutal achilles injury. Zsolt would continue his career as a coach working with 6-7 year olds at one of Hungary’s biggest academies, Videoton, and then later Phoenix Gold FC.  

He would use the expertise and skill which he developed at the academies to nurture his son into the world of football. Senior Szoboszlai would train Dominik from the age of three to hone the talents of his son. 

In an interview to Hungarian paper Feol, senior Szoboszlai described how he had ‘worked with a lot of talented players, but his son truly stood out from the age of 5-6.’ 

It was Zsolt’s nurturing and astute eye for talent which helped Szoboszlai grow and develop. His father would train with Szoboszlai for hours and analyse his game to find areas in which the young player could improve. Szoboszlai himself credits much of his early success thus far to his father stating in an Interview with Nemzeti Sport this summer that, ‘without him, I would be nowhere.’ 

Szoboszlai would jump around Hungary’s major academies, he had a spell at his father’s club Phoenix Gold, before moving to Videoton, Ujpest and ultimately settling at MTK, Hungary’s biggest export of football talent. 

The youngster’s technique, pace and innate understanding of the game was quickly picked up a young football agent in the name of Matyas Eszterhazy who had just split with his partner and created his own agency. One of Eszterhazy’s first move was to convince Red Bull Salzburg to offer Szoboszlai a trial at the age of 16. 

Szoboszlai took the trial by storm and Salzburg quickly offered him a contract.

Szoboszlai moved to the ancient industrial city of Austria in 2016 once he had turned 16 years of age. He would spend much of the first season in Red Bull’s U18 side. 

It was in the spring of 2017 when Szoboszlai first broke into the scene in Hungary with a single moment of genius whilst playing for Hungary’s U17 side at an U17 European Championship qualifier. 

Hungary were playing against Norway and the game had been tied 0-0 with Hungary needing a win to qualify. The game was already two minutes into added time when Szoboszlai received a ball about five yards outside of the eighteen yard box. Szoboszlai deftly struck the ball first time and whipped into the back of the new with absolute precision. 

The strike was one of utter brilliance and it would send major hype waves around Hungary. 

It was the second last minute winner Szoboszlai had scored for the U17 side after an astutely placed free-kick against Russia in the prior Qualifying match. 

Szoboszlai quickly became a household name in Hungary and the latest young talent touted as the next superstar to lead Hungary back to its golden years. 

The early hype despite Szoboszlai putting in strong performances in the U17 European Championship which followed was much too premature. 

Back in the spring of 2017, Szoboszlai had not even established himself as a regular for Red Bull Salzburg’s 2nd team Liefering and was miles away from first team action. 

Thanks to his father’s guidance and nurturing, Szoboszlai kept his feet on the ground and continued his hard-work rather than letting the praise get to his head. 

The following season Szoboszlai would establish himself as a regular for Liefering making 33 appearances, netting 10 times and handing out 7 assists as well as scoring once and assisting six times for the club’s U19 side in the UEFA Youth League. 

At the end of the season Szoboszlai made his debut for Salzburg’s first team capping off an excellent campaign. 

Szoboszlai remained at Liefering at the beginning of the following season despite many high profile departures at Salzburg. On top of that a torn ligament kept him out of action for several weeks which compounded his disappointment.  

Szoboszlai kept his head down however and came back from his injury strong. He quickly picked up tremendous form managing scoring 6 times and handing out 4 assists in just 9 appearances for Liefering during the first half of the 2018/19 campaign. 

By March 2019, Salzburg manager Marco Rose could not ignore Szoboszlai’s impressive exploits and he handed the Hungarian his first start for the club. 

Szoboszlai did not disappoint and scored to help Red Bull secure a 2-0 victory against FC Wacker. 

The goal would help catapult Szoboszlai in the pecking order and Marco Rose would continue to give him more and more taste of first team football from thereon. 

Szoboszlai netted and assisted two goals in his third start for Salzburg merely a month later. 

He would also hand out an assist against Napoli on his Europa League debut. 

His fine run of form earned Szoboszlai his third call-up to Hungary’s senior side. 

In the two previous occasions Szoboszlai did not make it off the bench for Hungary. His first call-up included an especially cruel defeat to Andorra which Szoboszlai had to watch from the side-lines at just 17 years of age. 

Szoboszlai’s big moment came in March 2019. At just 18 years of age he made his debut for Hungary coming on as a substitute in a disappointing defeat to Slovakia. 

Merely three days later however he would start and star in a famous 2-1 victory against World Cup runners up Croatia. Szoboszlai faced off against FIFA World Player of the year Luka Modric and Barcelona’s Ivan Rakitic but the Hungarian showed maturity beyond his years and did not look out of place against two world class midfielders as he helped Hungary secure an impressive victory. 

All in all, Szoboszlai ended the second half of the year with 16 first team appearances in the league for Salzburg with 3 goals and 4 assists and securing the Austrian Bundesliga title. 

In the summer he featured in two victories for Hungary against Azerbaijan and Wales before impressing in pre-season for Red Bull Salzburg. 

Szoboszlai has begun the current 2019/20 campaign in strong form too. He currently has three goals and three assists in ten appearances for Salzburg in all competitions including a debut Champions League goal against Genk. 

Szoboszlai has also scored his first international goal for Hungary in September with a trademark free-kick goal against Slovakia. 

At still just 18 years of age, the Hungarian has the world at his feet. He has all the attributes to go right to the top. He is fast, with incredible football intelligence which enables him to cut through defences similar to the creativity of Manchester City’s Kevin De Bruyne. Meanwhile Szoboszlai’s pace and commanding stature at 6 foot 1 makes him a dominating physical presence which would help him settle in any of Europe’s major leagues. 

It is Szoboszlai’s shooting technique which makes him stand out from the rest however. His right foot is lethal and extremely accurate and it makes him potent from long distance. With already a plethora of impressive long range finishes Szoboszlai has Europe’s biggest club’s keeping a close eye on his development. 

Currently however, the Hungarian has no intention of leaving Salzburg. The Austrian side is one of Europe’s biggest breeding ground for young talent and thus a fine institution for Szoboszlai’s development. 

Szoboszlai will be hoping to impress in the Champions League against the current holders Liverpool on Wednesday when he faces off against some of the best players in the world.  

How far Szoboszlai will go is only down to him. With the right support system and his father’s guidance and counsel he has the right backbone. And if he continues his methodical training and development on the football pitch he will have a long and successful career in European football. 


NBI Round 7 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 yet another break.  I’m not quite sure why we needed one after a break two weeks ago but who am I to argue with the MLSZ? The Hungarian Cup season started so perhaps that was the reason?   The MLSZ needs to realize that the clubs have to get accustomed to playing two games a week if they are to build any stamina and sustain it should they reach the European group stages.   We had a total of 16 goals scored in round 6 so in that respect it was a normal NBI week. Off to round 7 we go after we both predicted perfect scores for round 6.5 (Zalaegerszeg 1-2 Ferencváros).

Chris: This should be an interesting week as each NBI team is coming off a victory in the Magyar Kupa (some easier than others), and most have had a chance to heal some injuries and refocus their squad as the fall season hits its stride. Fehérvár's perfect record will be put to the test by visiting Újpest, and Zalaegerzeg are due a result after a number of good performances without reward. Let's dive into this week's feast of football.

Saturday, 28 September

Debrecen vs Puskás Akadémia

Nagyerdei Stadion, Debrecen (15:00)

Chris: Consecutive narrow defeats for Debrecen in their last two games have put an abrupt end to their encouraging start to the season.  We’ve seen both sides of this team and I’m guessing the real Debrecen is somewhere in the middle.  One thing we can probably count on is goals as their free-flowing and quick attack led by Kevin Varga is always dangerous - especially with legitimate targets such as Haruna Garba and Tunde Adeniji roaming up front.  However, their defense has been spotty at best.  Center backs Bence Pávkovics and Csaba Szatmári have both tailed off after strong starts this season and it looks like lack of concentration is the culprit rather than lack of ability. 

Puskás Akadémia have shown a fairly competent attack as well in the opening six games with David Vanacek emerging as their early-season danger man. Kamen Hadzhiev has led a strong back line that has conceded more than one goal on just one occasion this season.  Both teams are coming off confidence-boosting cup wins this week and should provide some entertainment here.

Prediction: Debrecen 3-1 Puksás

Paul:  Debrecen have lost their last two matches after winning their first three matches of the season.   Something seems to be lacking in the side this season even without the services of playmaker Ádám Bódi.  Until they can discover some consistency it could be a difficult season for the Debrecen fans.

I like what I am seeing from Puskás.   Ezekiel Henty has not played well since his opening match but Ádám Gyurcsó and David Vanecek have been stepping up their play as of late.  In what could be the most entertaining match of the week, I will pick Puskás as my “upset of the week.”

Prediction: Debrecen 1-3 Puksás


Kaposvár vs Diósgyőr

Rákóczi Stadium, Kaposvár (15:00)

Chris: Even after a 4-0 win at Soltvadkert in the cup this week, Kaposvár manager Róbert Waltner wasn’t very impressed with his team’s mental approach in recent matches.  It’s no surprise that they are tipped to go straight back down this season, but he still feels he can get more from his players.  A win at Debrecen was a bit lucky, but a home game against struggling Diósgyőr might be just what they need at the moment to keep them from falling off the pace too early.  

Tamás Feczkó had a successful debut for Diósgyőr as they edged ZTE at home.  It was an important win for them as a fifth consecutive defeat would have been monstrously bad for a team with mid-table aspirations.  Miskolc will be hoping to keep a winning run going against Kaposvár but they have struggled in the scoring department with just five goals in six matches.  With Rui Pedro they have a chance to get something from this match, but their slim 1-0 win over NBIII Érd VSE was sub-standard, especially with so many first-team players in the starting XI. 

Prediction: Kaposvár 1-1 Diósgyőr

Paul:   Kaposvár play only their third home match of the season and entertain fellow strugglers Diósgyőr from the opposite eastern end of Hungary.  I am still trying to figure out this club due to their inconsistency.   Their victory over Debrecen showed that anything is possible but I am still very skeptical.  This will be a defensive battle but Kaposvár will have to wait longer for their first home victory of the season.

Tamás Feczkó is back in the NBI and returned with a victory.  His appointment will prove to be a boon to the club. These two breaks came at the perfect time for him to have extra practice sessions with his players.  The results will start showing. I still feel Feczkó was unjustly let go from MTK last season. A great recent signing was Rui Pedro who will provide some greatly needed creativity to the squad.

Prediction:  Kaposvár 0-1 Diósgyőr


Mezőkövesd vs Honvéd

Városi Stadion, Mezőkövesd (15:00)

Chris: Mezőkövesd won a hotly-contested match at Kisvárda last round to keep pace near the top of the table.  With five wins in six games they are getting a lot of attention with their good form, solid defense and all-around good team play.  They will slowly grind a team into the pitch and walk off with a narrow win any day than participate in a sexy defeat. Aliaksandr Karnitski, who has helped strengthen Attila Kuttor's midfield, will be suspended after being sent off before the break against Kisvárda.

Honvéd are not quite the finished product as they’ll still be without Davide Lanzafame and Patrick Ikenne-King.  The addition of Krisztián Vadócz in midfield and Tomas Tujvel in goal has strengthened the side but this will be a tough trip for them.  Perhaps things will look up for them next week, but his isn’t the week they turn it around.

Prediction: Mezőkövesd 2-1 Honvéd

Paul:  Mezőkövesd bounced back with a difficult away win against Kisvárda.  Tamás Cseri, who continues to play great football, was accosted by several fans after the match in front of his wife and child.  As for football,  Mezőkövesd are back home and the week’s rest should do them good.  They will control the course of play and edge the visitors by a goal which is their usual modus operandi. 

Honvéd played a surprisingly defensive match in losing to Fehérvár by a goal.   Davide Lanzafame should miss this match again.  Krisztián Vadócz is back with the club but I am not sure if he has much left in the tank as they say.  Honvéd appear to have shored up their defense which should keep them close until a late goal wins it for the home side.

Prediction:   Mezőkövesd 2-1 Honvéd


Zalaegerszeg vs Paks

ZTE Aréna, Zalaegerszeg (15:00)

Chris: For 88 minutes Zalaegerszeg were the better team against Ferencváros last week, but two late lapses in concentration on set pieces let them down in a match they should have gotten something from.  The emergence of Eduvie Ikoba as their main target man took another step in the right direction with his second goal in three appearances for the towering American striker.  This isn’t a team to be trifled with.  Barna Dobos is also getting key midfielder Gergo Kocsis and defender Szilárd Devecseri back after both were suspended against Fradi.

Paks went from the heights of beating Mezőkövesd away to the depths of being thrashed by Ferencváros at home 4-0 in one week.  Dániel Böde has yet to open his account for his new club and the onus of offensive production has fallen to the familiar János Hahn.  They’ve run hot and cold this season and will find themselves against a team that can match them at both ends.

Prediction: Zalaegerszeg 1-0 Paks 

Paul:  Zalaegerszeg is still trying to learn how to win in the NBI.  They have come very close several times including nearly defeating the defending champions Ferencváros last week.  They had the match under control but then fell apart.  Zoltán Stieber is still a bit rusty after not playing much in MLS and we are still waiting to see the player from years ago.  This is the week where everything comes together for this newly promoted side.

Paks were embarrassed at home in their last match against Ferencváros.  Dániel Böde still hast not found his goal scoring form and has had some trouble adjusting to his new club.  Paks will continue to be a club of inconsistency despite having a good number of quality players. I still think letting Aurél Csertői go was a mistake but you never know as he may one day return to the club.

Prediction:  Zalaegerszeg 2-1 Paks


MOL Fehérvár vs Újpest 

MOL Aréna Sóstó, Székesfehérvár (19:30)

Chris: With all the attention on Ferencváros in the Europa League, Fehérvár have “quietly” gone about starting the season undefeated and assembling a chilling, deep squad of talent.  Every position is stacked with Armin Hodzic and Márkó Futács leading the way with 11 goals between them.  They’ve also posted four clean-sheets thanks to a combination of stellar goalkeeping by Ádám Kovácsik and a new, improved defense with the addition of Visar Musliu to the veteran leadership of Roland Juhász. .

Újpest couldn’t have asked for a better signing than Róbert Feczesin who has scored three goals in two games since joining on a free at the transfer deadline. Lilák were headed for a third consecutive defeat until a sensational comeback against Debrecen last round earned them their second win of the season.  It’s been a frustrating season for manager Nebojsa Vignjevic who has dealt with injuries and the inability to lure talent to his squad - more from a lack of commitment from the owners than anything.  With supporter frustration mounting, the win was a welcome relief over the last couple of weeks.  Their history against Vidi/Fehérvár in recent seasons isn’t an encouraging indicator of Újpest getting a result here, and their lack of a solid goalkeeper is worrying as well.

Prediction: Fehérvár 2-1 Újpest

Paul: What a start for Fehérvár with six straight wins to open the season.  They only bested Honvéd by a goal but 3 points is 3 points however it is done.   Armin Hodzic is playing very well and fulfilling his potential when Liverpool signed him back in 2012.  The Fehérvár train will not be derailed as they win yet again.

Újpest came to life in their home win against Debrecen.  Now the question is will the week off stop this momentum?  Róbert Feczesin has been a nice addition to the club and is a scoring threat.   Things will be back to normal as the Lilak will struggle and not put any goals past in-form keeper Ádám Kovácsik.

Prediction:  Fehérvár 2-0 Újpest


Sunday, 29 September

Ferencváros vs Kisvárda

Groupama Aréna, Budapest (16:00)

Chris: Ferencváros will be playing two games per week from now until December as they are participating in three competitions.  This will be their fourth game in 11 days and it will be a test of their depth.  They showed signs of fatigue last week at Zalaegerszeg but managed to score two late goals to grab a sensational win.  The absence of Isael, who will be serving his last of a three-game ban, will keep the winger fresh as Sergei Rebrov looks ahead to Ludogorets this week.  

Kisvárda are in need of a win this week after consecutive defeats but they will have their work cut out for them in Budapest.  There is no doubt this is an improved squad from last season with Gheorghe Grozav meeting expectations and Patrik Tischler showing his quality as he broke his duck last week with a diving header for his first goal of the season in a losing effort against Mezőkövesd. The absence of Stavros Tsoukalas (suspended) will certainly be felt in midfield.  In three games last season, Kisvárda lost all three meetings with the champions without scoring a goal.  They’ll do marginally better against a slightly rotated Fradi team.

Prediction: Ferencváros 2-1 Kisvárda

Paul: Ferencváros are on a roll and I don’t see that stopping in this match.   Rebrov has them playing very well and they are an exciting team to watch.   I am curious to see if they will be able to handle their large number of matches but here they are coming off a week’s rest after salvaging a late, exciting win over Zalaegerszeg.

Many fans of Kisvárda did not show any sportsmanship in their last match against Mezőkövesd.  This will be a situation to watch and should it continue the club must face consequences.  Back to football, I don’t see Kisvárda putting up much of a fight here and Fradi fans will show up in good numbers and voices.

Prediction:  Ferencváros 3-0 Kisvárda