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