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Season review: Hungary

Published: Tuesday 29 May 2012, 0.54CET
Champions Debreceni VSC finished the 2011/12 Hungarian First League campaign undefeated and then beat MTK Budapest on penalties in the cup final to clinch the double.
Season review: Hungary
Debrecen lift the trophy after winning the 2012 Hungarian Cup ©Gabor Baricsa
Published: Tuesday 29 May 2012, 0.54CET

Season review: Hungary

Champions Debreceni VSC finished the 2011/12 Hungarian First League campaign undefeated and then beat MTK Budapest on penalties in the cup final to clinch the double.

Debreceni VSC did not suffer a single Hungarian First League defeat before clinching the title with two games to spare with a 4-0 victory against Pécsi MFC. They then set the seal on a memorable season by lifting the Hungary Cup too.

Champions: Debreceni VSC
Elemér Kondás's side were deserved title winners after their imperious performance throughout a campaign that they finished unbeaten. The 2011 champions Videoton FC finished eight points back in second place, while Győr ETO FC were third. Former European Champion Clubs' Cup semi-finalists Vasas SC suffered a disastrous run of form in spring and were relegated to the second tier alongside Zalaegerszegi TE, who won just one match all season.

Cup final: Debreceni VSC 3-3 MTK Budapest (Debrecen win 8-7 on penalties)
Debrecen's hopes looked to be over when László Zsidai put MTK 3-2 up three minutes from the end of normal time. A man down since Balazs Nikolov's dismissal on the hour, Kondás's team summoned up one last effort, however, and Péter Szakály's second goal of the game forced extra time, and then penalties. Both sides failed to convert one apiece, through Adamo Coulibaly and Rafe Wolfe, before István Verpecz saved Dávid Kálnoki-Kis's effort to seal an 8-7 shoot-out win.

European places*
Debreceni VSC - UEFA Champions League, second qualifying round
Videoton FC - UEFA Europa League, second qualifying round
MTK Budapest - UEFA Europa League, first qualifying round
Budapest Honvéd FC - UEFA Europa League, first qualifying round

*Subject to final confirmation from UEFA

Player of the Year: Péter Szakály (Debreceni VSC)
The 25-year-old was voted the league's best player by the members of the Hungarian Professional Footballers' Association. In his first season as captain the midfielder blossomed and contributed five league goals, none more important than his last-gasp equaliser in the cup final. In his fifth and best season with the club to date, his leadership skills really came to the fore, validating his coach's decision to hand him the armband.

One to watch: Ádám Bódi (Debreceni VSC)
Voted Young Player of the Year, the 21-year-old midfielder from Nyiregyhaza is rapidly proving a more than an able replacement for veteran Tibor Dombi. Operating on the right of midfield, he chipped in with eight goals, making him the club's second-highest league scorer behind Frenchman Coulibaly. A regular fixture in the national Under-21 team, should Bódi replicate his form next season, a call-up to the senior team surely beckons.

Surprise package: Budapest Honvéd FC
Recording their best finish since 1994/95, Attila Supka's Honvéd surprised everyone by grabbing the final UEFA Europa League spot. Consistent throughout, Supka's team were a top-four presence from matchday five onwards – an impressive feat considering the club sold three of their main strikers, including Danilo, Sándor Torghelle and Dieng Cheikh Abass. Although not the most expansive side in the division, their team ethic and relentless spirit earned them a deserved European berth.

Leading scorer: Adamo Coulibaly, Debreceni VSC (20)

Relegated: Zalaegerszegi TE, Vasas SC

Promoted: MTK Budapest, Egri FC

Number: 0
The amount of defeats suffered by Debrecen in the league this season, the champions posting 22 wins and eight draws.

Quote:
"Most of the team contributed to our successful performance but achieving good results on the international stage will necessitate the signing of at least two or three new players. There is always a need for a prolific goalscorers and as of now we are not looking so much to sign new squad players, but more to add players who will immediately take a place in the starting lineup."
Debrecen coach Elemér Kondás wastes no time in looking ahead to next season.

Last updated: 10/07/12 14.21CET

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