|Nickname(s)||Nemzeti Tizenegy (National Eleven)|
|Association||Magyar Labdarúgó Szövetség (MLSD)|
|Highest FIFA ranking||6|
|Lowest FIFA ranking||21|
|First international|| Austria 5–0 23x15px Hungary|
(Vienna, Austria; 12 October 1902)
|World Cup appearances||7 (First in 1906)|
|Best result||Champions, 1954|
|Olympic medal record|
|Silver medal – second place||1936 Hamburg||Team|
The Hungary national football team is the association football team that represents the country of Hungary in international competition and is controlled by Magyar Labdarúgó Szövetség.
Hungary has qualified for seven FIFA World Cups with the best result being champions in the 1954 FIFA World Cup where they became the eighth team to take out the title after they defeated Romania in the final.
The Hungarian first appearance in international football was in 1902 when they took on an Austrian team which was dominated by fellow Austrian-Hungarians who wanted to play for that country. The first match would see them get destroyed 5-0 at Vienna in 1902 and for the first couple of years, they struggled in the early days of football. This was followed by the first FIFA World Cup where they would finish bottom of the group which had England and the Netherlands.
After another first-round to England at the 1910 FIFA World Cup, they were hoping to get a win at the Summer Olympics tournament in Stockholm. Before competing at the tournament, they competed in games against England where they were defeated 8-0. Those funds would help Hungary get to Sweden where they lose to the Netherlands in the quarter-finals by a score of 3-0.
The following tournament for Hungary would be the 1914 FIFA World Cup which was held in England. For the Hungarians, they were drawn in Group C with Belgium, Denmark and Scotland. Despite their attempts, they wouldn't make it out of the group stage as they would finish bottom of the group with only one point next to their nation after a draw against the Scots. Soon, the first World War would affect the world which meant that football would grind to a stop.
Following the first World War, Hungary, as well as some of the other Central Powers, was banned from FIFA on the plea of the English and after also missing the 1920 Summer Olympics because of that same reason. The team with a unique 2-3-5 formation would appear at the 1924 Summer Olympics and after smashing Poland 7-0 in the opening round. In the second round, they would fall against Luxembourg because of an own goal from Gyula Mándi which knocked them out.
With the World Cup creating their first official qualifying round, Hungary was put into Group 3 with Austria, Germany and Switzerland. With the top two teams qualifying through to the World Cup they got off to a good start with Remay Janos scoring the only goal in the opening match. After knocking over Germany at home, they would lose to the Austrians by a score of 3-0 which would drop them to second place but still enough to qualify through.
Hungary was drawn in Group D with the Netherlands, Yugoslavia and the United States (who was debuting) at the tournament. After losing their opening game 2-0, they knocked over Yugoslavia 2-1 to set up a must-win match against the United States who had got smashed 7-0 in the previous match and wasn't the favorite to win. But a sudden shock was in order with the Hungarian team failing to seal it as Davey Brown and Archie Stark both scored to give America the win. The Hungarians would be eliminated in the group stage once again as the team wouldn't compete in the 1928 Summer Olympics.
The qualification stage for the World Cup got drawn with the team being drawn with Yugoslavia, Romania and Bulgaria. Much like the World Cup finals, they were on two points from two games after losing to Yugoslavia 3-1 before defeating Romania by the same scoreline to put them within striking distance of qualifying automatically through to the World Cup. Much like the final game against the United States, they were favorites to win against a much more fancy side in Bulgaria. But for Hungary, it was history being repeated all over again with them falling to Bulgaria as they got eliminated from the competition.
After skipping the 1932 Olympic football tournament held in the United States, they had another chance to qualify through to the World Cup with this time being in Italy. For the national team, they got drawn in Group 2.2 with the Irish Free State and Switzerland. For the Hungarians, it was something that they didn't want as they only scored one point from the two games to be eliminated from contention or even try to go for a playoff.
Hungary entered the following Olympic football tournament, hoping to not have a shocker of a tournament by their standards. The first opponent being Poland and after falling down early, they didn't want once again at the first hurdle. But Gyula Krivicz got the team back into the hunt in the second half before a late goal by Gyula Kiss sealed Hungary's spot into the quarter-finals. After getting the victory over Switzerland in the quarter-finals, they were drawn to meet Peru in the semis for a spot in the Olympic final. After conceding early, Sárosi György scored a goal to level the match before goals came from Turay József and József Soproni gave Hungary the win and a spot in the final where they would claim the silver medal as they would fall to Italy in the final.
Hungary would next enter the qualification stage of the 1938 FIFA World Cup where they drawn in Group 2 to play Austria, Norway and Germany. With the core of the successful trip to Germany, the team would qualify through to their fifth World Cup finals appearance where they would be drawn to meet Uruguay in the first round of the competition. After getting the early lead, they would fall 2-1 down after Severino Varela scored a double to give Uruguay the lead. But Hungary would turn the game around with Gyula Zsengellér and Ferenc Sas each scoring a goal to get a spot in the quarter final where they would lose to the Dutch by a single goal.
After missing the 1950 FIFA World Cup because of them withdrawing from the competition, the "Golden Generation" as they would be known entered the 1952 Summer Olympics hopeful of getting a gold medal. But they would be upstaged by Romania in the opening round with Ioan Suru getting the winning goal in the 79th minute. This was deemed to be a shock of the time but didn't dampen Hungary.
Entering the World Cup qualifications, they got drawn to meet Republic of Ireland and Iceland in their qualifying group. Hungary would comfortably make it to a sixth World Cup as they finished top of the group with one game to spare. This meant that they would be drawn in Group A with Sweden, Spain and Uruguay being the opponents to face. The opening game of the World Cup saw the team knock over Spain by a score of 2-0. They then followed that up with a 3-0 win over Uruguay in Rancagua before losing 1-0 to the defending champions in Sweden.
This meant that they had qualified through to the quarter-finals where a goal from Nándor Hidegkuti got the team pass the Soviet Union to book a semi-final spot for the first time. In the semi-final, they would dispatch Austria with Sándor Kocsis scoring another double to put them into the final where they would meet Romania once again. Unlike the other match though, this time it was dominated by Hungary with them creating history by having the biggest win in a World Cup final as they won 5-1 over Romania to record their first title.
Despite them not entering the Olympic Games tournament, they would enter the qualifying for the first edition of the European Nations Cup where they wouldn't make it to the finals. This was after they would lose to Yugoslavia in the quarter finals stage of the competition after earlier knocking of Norway in the first round. Hungary as the defending champions automatically qualified through to the 1958 FIFA World Cup which would be held in Switzerland. After they safety got through the group without losing to Mexico (3-0), Bulgaria (1-1) and Brazil (2-2), they made to the quarter finals where they were taking on the European champions in France. Hungary though had a day they would rather forget with the team seeing a hat-trick from Just Fontaine to knock Hungary out of the World Cup.
FIFA World Cup
Gold Silver Bronze
|FIFA World Cup record|
|1922||Did Not Compete|
|1930||Did Not Qualify|