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Hungary were promoted to League A after winning their League B group last time out, finishing above Russia, Serbia and Turkey. They face a tough task in the Nations League, with Italy and Germany joining England in their group. Nevertheless, after being pitted in a similarly strong group at Euro 2020, they emerged with draws against France and Germany and cannot be written off. Planet Sport picks out five of their leading names.
If Hungary are to achieve a positive result against England they will need a performance from their RB Leipzig keeper.
Gulacsi was named in the 2018/19 Kicker Team of the Season and has made 216 appearances across his last six seasons.
It is a far cry from his five-year stint at Liverpool which saw Gulacsi fail to make an appearance for the Reds and loaned out to Hereford United, Tranmere and Hull.
His country's vice captain he has played 47 times at international level since earning his first cap in 2015. Sometimes derided for his ball-playing skills, Gulacsi knows what he's in the team for: "I always say the main thing of goalkeepers still is to save the ball."
Grew up in God, a small city in Hungary, where his former professional footballer father built a pitch in their back garden. Now likened to Virgil van Dijk, Szalai was a relative unknown before making the move from Hungarian top-flight side Mezokovesd to Cypriot outfit Apollon Limassol in 2019. His performances there earned him a move to Fenerbahce in 2021 and already his impressive performances at the heart of defence have seen Szalai linked with moves to AC Milan, West Ham, Newcastle and Chelsea - a £20million fee has been mentioned.
A standout performer for Hungary in Euro 2020, the 24-year-old's stock will rise even higher should he keep Harry Kane quiet in Budapest on Saturday.
Centre-back Orban, who like Gulacsi also plays for RB Leipzig, was born in Germany and played twice for the under-21s before switching alliances to Hungary, where his father was born - he was christened Vilmos but changed his name to Willi after teachers and friends struggled to pronounce his name.
— RB Leipzig English 🏆 (@RBLeipzig_EN) May 14, 2022
He signed for RB Leipzig in 2015 when Ralf Rangnick was in charge, citing him as the reason he moved clubs, saying: "I switched mainly because of Ralf Rangnick. He can make any player better." Orban was undecided who to represent at international level and therefore wasn't called up to play for Hungary until 2018. Since then he has only missed a handful of games, making 29 appearances and scoring five times.
Hungary's most exciting talent is attacking midfielder Szoboszlai, who completes the Hungarian contingent who play for RB Leipzig. Just 21 years of age, the playmaker is Hungary's most expensive player of all time, having been bought for €20million from associate club RB Salzburg. At club level he has been able to rack up 51 goals and 54 assists in just over 150 games. He scored twice on his debut for Leipzig, displaying his deadly long-range shooting and impressive technique in a 4-0 win over Stuttgart. A free-kick specialist, he produced a stunning effort in Hungary's 2020 Nations League win over Turkey.
Hungary's captain and current topscorer with 25 to his name is Basel's striker Adam Szalai. His career has seen him play predominantly in Germany with teams including Mainz and Hoffenheim, but he did spend some of his younger years playing for Real Madrid B between 2007 and 2010.
— BBC Sport (@BBCSport) June 23, 2021
On the national stage, Szalai represented Hungary at under-20 and under-21 level before making his full debut in 2009. He has since played 79 more times. His biggest goal of his international career came when he put Hungary into a shock 1-0 lead against Germany at Euro 2020, with the game eventually ending 2-2. At 6ft 4in, Szalai will be looking to use his physical presence to find weaknesses in the England rearguard and with the quality of Szoboszlai's free-kicks to feed off, set pieces will prove Hungary's main attacking weapon at the weekend.
The article Five Hungary players England need to watch out for in their Nations League clash appeared first on Planetsport.com.