hu en
2019. Augusztus 16. 07:27  -  David Rechnitzer
Zoltan Kovacs: Our squad is strong and competitive and the players are hungry for success

The MOL Fehervar FC Director of Football gave a lengthy interview, which can be read below. 

Although two weeks have now passed since we were knocked out of the Europa League by Vaduz, we have to start by asking for your views on our European performances?

I am not revealing a secret when I say that being knocked out came unexpectedly for everyone. We cannot and do not even want to prepare for a situation like this, which sees us being knocked out in the Q2 stage to a team that on paper is weaker than us. This especially following the way we performed. If we want to be honest, we have to say that the team did not perform anywhere close to what it can. Having taken an early lead in the first leg, we then went on to basically not play football for the majority of the following 180 minutes. Then when we were chasing the game when it seemed as if we would lose, we started to attack and created several big chances, but it was too late and football punished us. These unacceptable performances can be added to when we talk about the second leg match against Zeta, which means 270 minutes and we simply cannot allow this to continue. We can say that our results in Europe over recent years means that these matches stand out negatively, and perhaps many will confirm that if we can return to those earlier matches and results as a club, than we cannot afford this for ourselves. Naturally I do not want to say that Vaduz did not deserve to go through, but the way they performed cannot be taken away from our own problems. 

How did you handle the situation? You could even hear news in places that Marko Nikolic would be leaving. Was there any base to this?

The most important thing is to have a straight spine and look each other straight in the face and talk it through. Where did we make mistakes and why those are responsible. There are always names that are linked to wins, but lesser so when we talk about defeat. We need to remain as men in difficult moments. Marko Nikolic is a manager who under his leadership has seen the team win the league title, become cup winners, reach the EL group stage and play in both the CL and EL play off's in two years. He also has a contract with our club that is still running. He deserves the trust in him for the earlier results and he cannot lose that trust after a defeat like this. However, it must be understood by fans and the general public that there are issues, which will be resolved within the club and not be made public. Without going into details about these internal issues, you can say that it is not by accident that the players have shown a reaction, which can be seen in the results of our first two league games. 

Our battle on three fronts has now become two. What are the targets in the domestic series? 

One of our big dreams this season has quickly fallen by the wayside and we have two remaining. Our target domestically has to be the league title and to win the Hungarian Cup. Some will say that by being knocked out of European competition, it makes things in the domestic series easier to achieve. However, I felt we were ready to do well on all three fronts that we targeted originally. We ended up winning the Hungarian Cup after the EL Group Stage, before finishing in second place in the league. We wanted to go one better this season but sadly it will not be. I expect from the team and coaching staff to do all they can to win the league title and Hungarian Cup.

The players have started in the good direction winning two league games out of two, which sees them at the top of the league table. 

Going out of the EL left its mark on the players, but as I have said earlier, it is not by accident that we have started the new league season in the way we have. Naturally making changes to the team's starting line-up also reflected that there is a healthy competition for places in the team. Our squad is strong and competitive and the players are hungry for success. Now the most important thing was to win our first two league games, which last happened 5 years ago back in the 2014-15 season. I would also like to pick out the way the supporters greeted the team against Kaposvar, which was just three days after our exit in Vaduz. I want to thank them. The team will do all it can to repay this love to them with performances. 

There have been new players that have arrived in recent weeks together with several that have left - mostly on loan - , however, the majority of last years team has remained. Are there any more changes expected to the squad over the summer?

We continuously examine the state of our squad and the quality and average age together. We have reacted to this by adding strength or freshening things up for each position where it was necessary. There are positions where we wanted to see even more competition for places. There were also players that can be given a bigger role this year, which also means them bringing an added quality. It is no secret that some players are in the final year of their contracts and we could not leave this out of our thinking. The squad has become stronger and it can be rotated better but this is the task of the manager. People know that in football anything can happen so I will not say that there will not be any more changes to the squad. 

There are new FA regulations that have thankfully resulted in more players being able to perform in the NB II. The Vidi II team has also undergone changes over the summer.

The Hungarian FA have brought in welcoming steps with regards to regulations for cooperation. I can say after the first three matches of the NB II season that it is very advantageous for both teams and the players to be working in this new system. Our second team in the NB III is one of the youngest when it comes to age, which also reflects this new conception. Krisztian Timar has been working very hard to develop our second team, which is just like the youth teams. Developing our players is the main priority at Vidi rather than chasing team success. You can see that the academy clubs have taken the most talented youngsters due to the parents believing that their kids can only develop the most there. As I have said several times, the results constraints are only place on the first team and we continue to go down this line. 

The third game of the OTP league season is next up. What are your impressions of the NB I this season and how do you see the 2019-2020 campaign unfolding?

We are beginning what is a very difficult league that has seen several teams strengthen. You will see higher quality matches. A minimum of two have linked up with the first two or three teams that improved their squads well over the summer. I am also pleased what I saw from our first opponents who were newly promoted Kaposvar. They arrived to Szekesfehervar wanting to play football. I consider that in the right direction that a young manager believes that with this attitude it can only increase the level of the league. 

We can now look forward to a full season at our new stadium after a long period. What plus does this give to the team?

We returned back home to Fehervar after three years. We were forced to return back to our temporary home for a couple of games at the start of this season. I hope that we can remain at home finally as everyone, which includes the supporters, players and city missed having us here. The supporters who continuously backed us in our games in Felcsut have formed a closer bond with the team and that has played a role in our success. Now we can finally play at our own stadium for a whole league season and it will mean plenty. I hope the team will produce performances that will increase the attendances at the MOL Arena Sosto and that even more will decide to come out and watch Vidi matches. 

MOL Fehérvár FC - Minden jog fenntartva
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