Hungary vs Portugal: Defending champs coming for seconds

Portugal will be looking to emulate their neighbours Spain as they target back-to-back European Championship titles. Their Euro 2020 campaign kicks off against Hungary.

When: Tuesday, June 15, 17:00 BST

How to watch: ITV1

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Best Bets

Half Time/Full Time Portugal/Portugal at 5/4

Portugal to win to nil at 5/4

Cristiano Ronaldo hat-trick at 14/1

Hungary have never beaten Portugal. Not during their golden era. Not during the 90s. Not in the early 2000s. And not in recent tussles either. 

Nevertheless, Portugal will certainly remember their encounter with the Hungarians during the previous European Championships.

Hungary's Tamas Kadar vies for the ball with Portugal's Bernardo Silva
Hungary's Tamas Kadar vies for the ball with Portugal's Bernardo Silva

That game went back and forth as Cristiano Ronaldo's brace eventually helped Fernando Santos' men to a 3-3 draw.

A lot has changed for both teams since that classic match in Lyon. Hungary, for instance, are without the two men who scored the goals on that day. Both Zoltan Gera and Balazs Dzsudzsak have called time on their international careers. 

However, new emerging talents point to a bright future for the national team. The likes of Adam Nagy, Daniel Gazdag and Roland Sallai will be looking to make a name for themselves at Euro 2020. 

Portugal, on the other hand, seem to have grown in strength since their Euro 2016 triumph.

With the likes of Ruben Dias, Bernardo Silva, Bruno Fernandes and Diogo Jota joining the fold, it's no surprise Portugal are regarded as one of the frontrunners.

Last Three Matches

Hungary 0-1 Portugal (World Cup Qualifier - September 3, 2017)

Hungary could count themselves unlucky when they hosted Portugal back in 2017.

Tamas Priskin was sent off after just 30 minutes as Hungary's task became that little bit more challenging.

The visitors dominated and eventually opened the scoring through Andre Silva. The advantage in numbers meant the hosts rarely came close to equalising.

Portugal 3-0 Hungary (World Cup Qualifier - March 25, 2017)

Despite keeping 11 players on the field, Hungary fell to an even heavier defeat in their first 2018 World Cup Qualifier with Portugal.

Andre Silva and Cristiano Ronaldo gave the hosts a two-goal advantage heading into the interval.

In the second-half, Ronaldo put the nail in the coffin as he moved Portugal 3-0 ahead.

Hungary 3-3 Portugal (Euro 2016 - June 22, 2016)

Having drawn their opening two games at Euro 2016, Portugal were at risk of missing out on a place in the Last 16.

The team needed a result against Hungary but that turned out to be a lot easier said than done.

Zoltan Gera opened the scoring in the 20th minute but the Hungarians were unable to take their lead into the second-half. Nani's equaliser just before the break seemed to put the Portuguese back on track.

That couldn't be further from the truth as moments after the restart, Balazs Dzsudzsak put his side back ahead. Cristiano Ronaldo levelled things up but just five minutes later, Dzsudzsak scored his second.

Hungary were hoping to win their first ever game against Portugal but that was not to be as Ronaldo came up with another equaliser in the 62nd minute. CR7's side progressed from third place in the group and went on to win the tournament.

Last ten head-to-heads

Hungary wins: 0

Draws: 3

Portugal wins: 7

Hungary goals: 7

Portugal goals: 22

Portugal stronger than in 2016

It still boggles the mind how Portugal managed to claim glory at Euro 2016.

Fernando Santos' men only managed one win in regular time during the tournament - that came in the semi-finals when they beat Wales by two goals to nil.

Portugal's team has changed somewhat since that triumph five years ago. You could argue that they now have a stronger team than they did at the previous Euros.

Are Portugal stronger than in 2016?
Are Portugal stronger than in 2016?

In spite of his age, Cristiano Ronaldo is still breaking records. Diogo Jota is in goalscoring form. Andre Silva has impressed for Eintracht Frankfurt.

Jose Fonte and Renato Sanches helped Lille to a Ligue 1 title. Bruno Fernandes was one of the stand-out players in the Premier League last season. Ruben Dias, meanwhile, was named as THE best player in the Premier League last season.

This list goes on but you get the point. Portugal have got their sights on defending their European crown. With a squad like that, you wouldn't bet against them.

In-form Hungary have nothing to lose

Imagine qualifying for a major tournament and being drawn into the group of death.

Unfortunately for Hungary, that's their reality. But on a positive note, they can tackle this competition with absolutely nothing to lose.

Can Hungary threaten Portugal?
Can Hungary threaten Portugal?

Marco Rossi's side are actually in good form ahead of Euro 2020. Hungary are unbeaten in 11 straight games while also managing some decent results along the way including a 2-0 win over Turkey.

They're unlikely to progress to the Last 16 but Hungary are certainly capable of giving a good account of themselves.

Goalscorer bets

Cristiano Ronaldo. Do we need to say much more?

The Portuguese legend has scored four goals and produced two assists in his last three games against the Hungarians.

Ronaldo is looking to win back-to-back Euros with Portugal
Ronaldo is looking to win back-to-back Euros with Portugal

At 3/4 he's clearly a favourite to haunt them again.

However, if you're feeling adventurous, how about backing Ronaldo to score a hat-trick at 14/1.

READ MORE: France vs Germany: Who wins early clash of the titans at Euro 2020?