15/07/2024
Home » The fanaticism of Hungarian supporters is insane

I went to four games of the Hungarian national team this season. We are going to enjoy them immensely during the upcoming European Championships in Germany. Be enchanted by the fanatical supporters, for whom there is no limit to passion and emotion. How come the national team lives like this?

Hungary’s matches are top-notch in terms of experience and that is due to several elements. For example, a regular ritual at home games is the song Nélküled by Ismerős Arcok. This song is passionately sung along by the entire stadium and immediately cranks up the emotion. Nélküled is about the many Hungarian minorities outside the country’s borders. This affects the Hungarian because of the trauma of Trianon, in which Hungary lost 70%(!) of its land in 1920. Every time you get goosebumps when Nélküled starts and the emotion drips from the faces. This song is also played at clubs in other countries where there is a Hungarian majority, such as DAC Dunajska Streda in Slovakia.

Involvement

The fanatical supporters’ group is the Carpathian Brigade. This is an umbrella organization that stands above the ultra groups of clubs. Everyone is Hungarian in the first place, so club-related interests do not play a role in the national team. Encouraging the country is the way to express Hungarian pride. Corteos are a habit and large-scale tifos a certainty. For the number of inhabitants, the number of spectators is particularly good. The country has 9.6 million citizens and another 4 million Hungarians. Home games sell out easily and on away days many more supporters make the trip than can fit in the away section.

Unlike the ultras of clubs, the Carpathian Brigade maintains a good relationship with the federation (MLSZ). Before the establishment of the Brigade in 2009, there were many problems between supporters and the association, but that has decreased considerably. However, there are complications with UEFA. For example, during the last European Championship, penalties were handed out regarding discriminatory behavior, anti-LGBTQ banners, and more. The national press, on the other hand, is very positive about the supporters and regularly lyrical about the atmosphere and involvement. Every now and then it even happens that Fidesz politicians post a photo of the packed stands. It also helps that Prime Minister Viktor Orbán is a real football fanatic, he is always present in the Puskás Aréna.

Unparalleled farewell

In November, Hungary will play a friendly match against Greece, which attracts no less than 50,893 Hungarians. The game is all about Balázs Dzsudzsák, because the former PSV player says goodbye as an international. With 109 caps, the winger can call himself a record international and thus surpasses Pyjama Man Gábor Király. Actually, Dzsudzsák has not played a role with the national team in recent years. However, his recent form with Debrecen has been so good this season that national coach Marco Rossi decided to call him up one more time, although some are calling it a favor.

The emotional Nélküled is sung, and the Carpathian Brigade creates a beautiful atmospheric action to honour Dzsudzsák: ‘2014 Bucharest, 2016 Lyon, thank you for the joy of goals for life’. Fifteen minutes before the end, Balázs is substituted and symbolically ties the captain’s armband around Dominik Szoboszlai. A few months ago, the same thing happened when striker Ádám Szalai said goodbye. Szoboszlai is Hungary’s new leader and the match ends in a 2-1 win over Greece.

Estonia & Bulgaria

At the end of March, a European Championship qualifier awaits: Bulgaria visits the Puskás Aréna. The exterior of the colossal stadium changes to the national colors of green, white and red. These colors represent strength (red), faith (white), and hope (green). In preparation, there will first be a practice against Estonia, with the friends from Poland coming over for support. A beautiful banner hangs in front of the fanatic side with the text Brotherhood, in honor of the close friendship. Hungary plays with difficulty, but gets Estonia on its knees by the ‘Viking’ Martin Ádám.

Against Bulgaria, the very short side is needed for a breathtaking tifo. The lights in the stadium are dimmed and the number 12 is created in the audience. The supporters stand like a real twelfth man behind her country, every game. Underneath the light show is the text: ‘Together for an unforgettable European adventure‘. Bulgaria has a hundred men with them and is considered to have no chance. Despite the fact that we are under the away section, we don’t hear anything from the Bulgarians because of the exuberant home support. Under the reign of new captain Szoboszlai, Bulgaria is sent home with a 3-0 score. The supporters close side by side with an impressive Poznań.

Storming Podgorica

In mid-June, there are two European Championship qualifiers on the agenda: Montenegro away and Lithuania at home. At least 1500 Hungarians travel to Podgorica, while only 500 tickets are available. Because the police feared an escalation, they opened an extra section in the stadium on the spot. In addition, there is no strict control on the home sections, so some enter through street vending. Some manage to buy a ticket for a tenner, others pay twenty-five euros or more. In the Pod Goricom Stadium, it was a hot afternoon with pyro and bombs. The fact that three times as many supporters make the trip proves the enormous passion for the national team all the more. Although the supporters’ groups performed, the outfield players did not manage to score: 0-0.

Hajrá Magyarország’

A few days later we are back in a sold-out Puskás Aréna: 65,000 supporters shout Hungary to a win. Joining the Carpathian Brigade is Ádám Szalai, the former captain who retired in September. Among the supporters, Szalai is not inferior to an ultra, because that’s how bad the first two rings on the E-side are. All the fanatical support groups of Honvéd, Debrecen, Újpest, Ferencváros, DVTK, Vasas and more are mixing and that is with only one goal: to help Hungary to a victory. The Polish friends are also present today and give a new flag as a gift. The text on the gigantic flag reads: ‘Brotherhood, United we are Strong’.

For the tifo, 5000 confetti rolls, 600 flags and 150 square meters of paper are used. The banner reads: Every Match is a Holiday. Lithuania is an easy prey and easily goes down 2-0. The first two rings on the fanatical side are not quiet for a moment and make it a popular festival. Hungary takes the lead in the group, because Serbia drops points in Bulgaria. The Hungarians can hardly avoid the European Championship in Germany.

In 2023, there will be beautiful posters against Montenegro and Serbia in Budapest. If you have the chance to be part of this, you will undoubtedly have an unforgettable experience. If the Hungarians don’t come into contact with penalties from UEFA, we will enjoy them immensely at the upcoming European Championship in Germany!

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