MX23RW : Friday, October 16 02:08:26| >> :600:185080:185080:
Sep 3, 2020 at 7.45pm UK at Yeni Sivas 4 Eylül Stadyumu

Yilmaz (37'), Kahveci (90+1')
FT(HT: 0-0)
Szoboszlai (80')
Siger (45'), Fiola (59'), Lang (75')

Preview: Turkey vs. Hungary - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Thursday's UEFA Nations League fixture between Turkey and Hungary, including team news and injury news.

Turkey and Hungary get their UEFA Nations League campaigns underway on Thursday evening aware that an opening defeat will leave them with an uphill task to earn promotion from Group B3.

Due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the international schedule, both teams will be playing their first game since November.

Match preview

Juventus and Turkey defender Merih Demiral pictured on international duty in November 2019© Reuters

Ahead of Euro 2020, Turkey would have had concerns that their efforts would be undermined by an injury to Merih Demiral and persistent speculation regarding key players.

However, the year-long delay in theory has benefitted Senol Gunes now that he has the Juventus centre-back at his disposal and several other stars more settled at their current clubs.

Gunes will now hope that Turkey are in a position to extend a run of form which has seen them record nine wins and three draws from their last 13 outings in all competitions.

Although the Crescent Stars were not facing stiff opposition in each of those games, they recorded four points from their double-header with France, an indication that this group can only improve further in the coming years.

Nevertheless, the same can be said of a Hungary side who would have been bitterly disappointed after squandering an opportunity to qualify for Euro 2020.

Midway through their schedule, they were the favourites to edge out the likes of Wales and Slovakia for the runners-up spot behind group favourites Croatia.

However, defeats to each of those nations saw the Magyars miss out by two points, leaving Marco Rossi to focus on an improved effort in this competition.

With no player in the current squad older than 32 years of age, there will be optimism that the likes of Dominik Szoboszlai and Willi Orban can use their big-match temperament to guide this side into a new era.

After edging out Greece for promotion during the 2018-19 campaign, Hungary are competing in section B for the first time.

Turkey form (all competitions): WWWDDW

Hungary form (all competitions): LLLWLL

Team News

Turkey's Cengiz Under celebrates scoring their second goal against France with teammates on June 8, 2019© Reuters

Gunes is unlikely to make many alterations from the side which recorded a 1-1 draw against Iceland in November.

With his stock rising at Trabzonspor, Ugurcan Cakir is pushing to become number one for his country ahead of Mert Gunok.

Veteran Burak Yilmaz will likely retain his spot down the middle of the attack, with Enes Unal having to make do with a spot among the replacements.

While Hungary will line up with many of their regulars, Rossi must also consider handing rare starts or debuts in several positions.

Krisztian Simon or Benjamin Babati are in contention for an outing on one of the flanks, as is uncapped Bendeguz Bolla who can be deployed in any position down the right.

Turkey possible starting lineup:
Gunok; Celik, Demiral, Soyuncu, Meras; Tekdemir, Yokuslu, Tufan; Under, Yilmaz, Calhanoglu

Hungary possible starting lineup:
Gulacsi; Bese, Lang, Orban, Fiola; Patkai, A.Nagy; Simon, Szoboszlai, Sallai; Szalai

SM words green background

We say: Turkey 2-1 Hungary

This has all the makings of a closely-fought contest. Although Hungary tend to be underdogs against the bigger nations, they possess players who can make an impact in any game. Nevertheless, we are backing Turkey to prevail by the odd goal in three on Thursday.


Who will win Thursday's UEFA Nations League clash between Turkey and Hungary?

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Ryan Giggs in charge of Wales on March 20, 2019
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