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Puskás Academy Is the Key to Bringing Hungarian Football Back to the Top

MTI-Hungary Today 2023.07.28.

It is the job of Puskás Academy to train footballers for Hungarian football who can help the country get back to the top of the world’s league, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, the founder of Puskás Academy, said in an interview with website puskasakademia.hu.

Viktor Orbán stressed that the most important thing for Puskás Academy’s first team is to not drop out of the Hungarian first division football championship.

In the Hungarian championship there are only 3-6-9 points between relegation and fifth or third place, so sometimes it can be decided by only two or three games.

It is very easy to be ‘kicked out’ of the first division when you thought you were fighting for a medal,”

Orbán noted.

He stressed that the motto of the academy remains valid: we are training people, decent people who are good footballers.

The prime minister also emphasized that one of the biggest professional challenges of Hungarian football is training players up to the age of 12 or 13, because according to football literature, many skills are developed by the age of 12 that cannot be developed later. This, and the national team, is what the federation should be most concerned with, he said, noting that the academies’ responsibility is to bring out the best in those who are selected.

Orbán added that

Hungarian football is not part of the entertainment industry, but is part of the life of the Hungarian people, and of national identity.

“We do not want to be entertained by skillful players who have flown in from faraway lands, but we want to see our own children. If we give that up, Hungarian football will have no meaning,” he highlighted.

That is why the aim of Puskás Academy is to have very good foreign players who young people look up to, however, the other half of the team must be home-grown players, Orbán stressed. He noted that last year, the academy’s first team had 4-5 home-grown youngsters in the starting line-up, with one or two more coming in substitution, so every week you could see at least six home-grown players on the pitch.

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He also pointed out the difficulties the academy faces when home-grown players are taken abroad. If they were at home, Puskás Academy would be competing with Ferencváros TC for the championship title, the prime minister said. However, he did not see this as a problem, as

Hungarian football needs the best players to achieve as much work as possible in the top leagues so they can serve the national team.

Orbán said that the defeat of Ferencváros in the Champions League showed one of the major problems of Hungarian football. “It is a big lesson, because in football inexplicable things always happen,” and

it is not good to have only one internationally-ranked team, because if they go down, we are left without a serious big team. That is why we need one or two more teams with a budget, player quality, and international ranking similar to Ferencváros,”

he highlighted.

In the longer term, Puskás Academy should not be seen as an internationally renowned club, but as a place from where reliable, well-coached players with a strong mentality and spirit will emerge, who will continue the best traditions of Hungarian football, Orbán concluded the interview.

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Via MTI, Featured image via Facebook/Puskás Akadémia

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