Martin Ádám’s 1-million-euro offer from South Korea came in vain
Two players from the NB I are selected for Marco Rossi's Hungarian national team for the matches in March, and these players have never been squad members before. We talked with Gábor Papp, manager of 20-year-old Péter Baráth (Debreceni VSC) and Paksi FC's Martin Ádám, who leads the goal scorer list with 23 goals, after the Paksi FC – Debreceni VSC (0-1) match on Sunday and before the players arrived at the training camp in Telki.
|The Hungarian national team’s three newcomers: Péter Baráth, Martin Ádám, and Callum Styles (from left to right, photo: facebook.com/mlsz)|
– Two of your clients received invitations to the national team from head coach Marco Rossi. In the case of Martin Ádám, who leads the goal scorer list, is evident, but Péter Baráth's name surprised many. You too?
– I knew that the captain was keeping an eye on Péter, but I did not know that he would already receive an invitation – said Gábor Papp of YUNiK Management, that represents Péter Baráth and Martin Ádám, in response to a question from Nemzeti Sport. – We have been working with Péter since 2017. He caught my eye in the youth league when he was not in the youth national team at the time. Since then, he has played in every age group and participated in the U-17 World Cup in 2019, where he scored against Australia. He then made his NB I debut and gradually became a key player in DVSC. Péter has already come a long way: he started from a small club in Gyulaháza, where he had played for seven years, then he also played for the age-group team of his hometown Kisvárda, and from 2016, he's been playing for Debreceni VSC. He has an outstanding attitude to football and has great qualities: he is 186 centimeters tall and has a strong physique. He has everything to have a good career in which the adult national team can be the next step.
– As a defensive midfielder, he will have quite a lot of rivals to get in the team. What do you think his strengths are in the long run?
– He even played in the youth team as an attacking midfielder and center-forward. What shows his competency is that he has scored 228 goals in the Hungarian Football Federation (MLSZ) competition system since childhood. Therefore, he can be used equally in defense and attack, he can reach the goal. It's a rare trait that someone can run as much in a match as Peti, yet he still can change his rhythm. For example, in his assist against Fehérvár, when he went around Balázs Dzsudzsák, who was dribbling, he suddenly accelerated on the right edge and then shot the ball with great force into the middle of the field. We also saw a very similar assist from him against Puskás Akadémia. Or I could mention his goal for Vasas in NB II when he quickly ran up from the halfway line and scored. He has an incredible working capacity. For example, in the youth team match against Poland, in the minutes of extra time, he was able to get into position at the end of a cross-pitch race after a defensive corner kick, even though he had already run twelve kilometers during the match.
BARÁTH'S ASSIST AGAINST FEHÉRVÁR
– When will it be time for him to change clubs, so that he can try himself out in a stronger league?
– I think he still can improve; he hasn't shown his full potential yet. It is important not to want to take two big steps simultaneously, and if he is going to sign for a stronger league, he will need to be placed in a club where he will get an opportunity, because if this is not guaranteed, then he is better to stay in Debrecen for the time being, where he is counted on. Last winter, he had the opportunity to sign a pre-contract with Italian club Empoli, and in the summer, he could have signed for free to the Serie A team because his contract in Debrecen would have expired. At the same time, unfortunately, he was in a sad and difficult life situation due to a very close relative's serious illness, so he did not want to be away from his family. Instead of the change, he extended his contract with Debrecen until the summer of 2023. He is 20 years old, there is no reason to rush. If his development remains unbroken and he can make his debut for the national team, he will surely have the opportunity to move forward in time.
BARÁTH'S GOAL FOR VASAS
– Let's move on to Martin Ádám. Perhaps one of the most interesting questions about him is why, right now, at the age of twenty-seven, did he become a top scorer?
– We've been representing Martin since 2016 and I think that when he felt the confidence and patience of the coaches, he was able to perform well even before. He started playing regularly in NB I during Michael Oenning's period as head coach, and although he played mostly as a winger in the 2016-17 season, he also scored seven goals from in that position. After that, however, his performance with the team also weakened, and Vasas was eliminated from NB I. The club meant a lot to him, and he stayed at Vasas in NB II, but in the new season, he did not get as many opportunities, and he lost his confidence. At the time, many people were surprised that he signed for Kaposvár in the winter, but we felt that the club in Somogy county was a good opportunity to get back in shape, and head coach Róbert Waltner was an absolute partner in this. He quickly became a key player, scored four goals in the last four rounds, finished the season with a total of eleven goals, and to his great surprise, he helped Kaposvár promote. The following season, he played in NB I, and five goals and six assists were enough to keep him in the topflight. We received several offers, but we decided on Paks because several players in the Tolna county club were able to lay the foundations for their long-term NB I career. This decision worked out as he scored eight goals in his first season, and since János Hahn's departure, he has become the number one goalkeeper. Martin Ádám's journey so far shows that the more they trust him, the more he is gradually able to perform better. And it obviously matters a lot that he has a coach like György Bognár in Paks whose goal is that his team always scores one more goal than the opponent, that they must focus almost exclusively on attacks, and it's not expected to participate in the defense as well.
|Gábor Papp (center) with his two clients, Martin Ádám and Péter Baráth, who are newcomers to the national team (Photo: YUNiK Management)|
– This will not be the case in the national team... What can we expect from him in the national team, how much of a challenge is it for him to meet Marco Rossi's expectations?
– I'm also looking forward to seeing how he will validate his style of play in another tactic, in a game system, when there will be fewer situations, so there will be more pressure on him. However, I can tell you that when he sees the specific target in front of him, he is much more focused. I hope Martin doesn't resent me when I tell you that we hooked him up with a dietitian years ago, but he didn't really follow the professional's advice at the time. By now, he lives his everyday life much more maturely and consciously, and he must also stand his ground as a family man and head of the family. In addition, he knew that Marco Rossi had expectations about this, so he's been having a different approach to the subject for months and has been working a lot on himself. I think it's clear to everyone that he's getting better and better, he's producing goals on a conveyor belt. Of course, we can't put everything on the account of the lifestyle change, and let's quickly add that he also scored 18 goals in the fall...
MARTIN ÁDÁM'S GOALS IN THE FALL
– Perhaps we do not take a big risk by stating that he can finish the season as the top scorer. What is the value of an NB I top scorer title in the summer transfer market, especially well over 20 goals?
– A lot depends on whether he can add to this number of goals in the national team and how he performs there. His contract with Paks is until 2026, but the club management there is always a partner in letting its players leave if a suitable offer is made. And Martin wants to move forward this summer. In the winter, he received a 1-million-euro offer from one of South Korea's top teams, and although he was offered a salary that is unbelievable at home, Martin did not want such a change in his life before his national team debut. In addition, he would like to be the top scorer in NB I, and during the season, Paks did not want to let him go either, which was perfectly understandable due to the fierce league competition. The near future will fundamentally depend on his performance in the national team. If we consider that he can take Ádám Szalai's place in the striker position in the medium run, then the goal will be to stay in Europe. At the same time, if he fails to perform convincingly in the national team, he may appreciate requests from more distant countries. We'll see what the future holds for him; a lot of things depend on how he plays in the national team...
THE HUNGARIAN SQUAD FOR THE PREPARATION MATCHES IN MARCH Goalkeepers: Dénes Dibusz (Ferencváros), Péter Gulácsi (RB Leipzig – Germany), Péter Szappanos (Budapest Honvéd)
Defenders: Bendegúz Bolla (Grasshoppers – Switzerland), Endre Botka (Ferencváros), Attila Fiola (MOL Fehérvár FC), Ákos Kecskés (FK Nizhny Novgorod – Russia), Ádám Lang (Omonia – Cyprus), Zsolt Nagy (Puskás Akadémia FC), Loïc Négo (MOL Fehérvár FC), Willi Orbán (RB Leipzig – Germany), Attila Szalai (Fenerbahçe – Turkey)
Midfielders: Péter Baráth (Debreceni VSC), Dániel Gazdag (Philadelphia Union – United States), Ádám Nagy (Pisa – Italy), András Schäfer (Union Berlin – Germany), Callum Styles (Barnsley – England), Dominik Szoboszlai (RB Leipzig – Germany), Bálint Vécsei (Ferencváros)
Attackers: Martin Ádám (Paksi FC), Roland Sallai (Freiburg – Germany), Szabolcs Schön (FC Dallas – United States), Ádám Szalai (FC Basel – Switzerland), Kevin Varga (Young Boys – Switzerland)
THE HUNGARIAN NATIONAL TEAM'S SCHEDULE UNTIL SEPTEMBER
HUNGARY – Serbia (Budapest, Puskás Aréna)
8.45: Northern Ireland – HUNGARY (Belfast, Windsor Park)
NATIONS LEAGUE, GROUP STAGE
LEAGUE A, GROUP 3
June 4, 6pm: HUNGARY – Anglia
June 7, 8.45pm: Italy – HUNGARY
June 11, 8.45pm: HUNGARY – Germany
June 14, 8.45pm: England – HUNGARY
September 23, 8.45pm: Germany – HUNGARY
September 26, 8.45pm: HUNGARY – Italy