Scout Report: Adam Nagy | Hungary’s promising midfielder


Hurong Xuan Binh makes his OOTB debut with an in depth Scout Report about the Hungary’s midfield sensation, Adam Nagy.

Adam Nagy 2016


As Hungary produced three stunning performances in the Group F of the European championship, there have been a large number of compliments given to the Bernd Storck’s side. He not only built up a satisfying and fresh team, but presented some up-and-comers as well. The likes of Adam Lang, Laszlo Kleinheisler and Adam Nagy gave people a positive impression. And on top of all that, their youngest player, Adam Nagy has been really brought to light following exceptional performances.

UPDATE: Adam Nagy has moved to Bologna as of the start of the 2016-17 season.

Who is Adam Nagy?

Born in the capital Budapest on June 17th 1995, Nagy started to take part in a football academy at the age of 8. His first club at youth level was Goldball 94’, where Zoltan Stieber, a Nagy’s current teammate at the national team, used to feature. When Adi, his childhood nickname, was 12, one of his coaches told him that he would never be a professional footballer. He didn’t give in, but struggled at some academies. It was not until he was 16, that Bobby Davison, a former Ferencvaros TC (FTC) manager, introduced him to VSI academy, which had been founded by Mark Hughes and Ian Wright. It was located in La Manga training camp (Spain) before being moved to Portugal in 2012. Nagy spent a comfortable two-and-a-half-year spell there before coming back to Hungary, attracting the attention of FTC’s head of recruitment Theo Schneider. It led to him signing a contract with the Hungarian giant, at the age of 18. During 2 years at FTC youth level, he was also an amateur futsal player in the Hungarian futsal second division league.

Talent Radar Accolades:

It’s been just four months for Adam Nagy since he made his debut for the FTC first team in the OTP bank Liga to earn his first cap. During the period since that appearance, Adi also made 7 appearances for the Hungary U20 team, including 4 starts at the 2015 U20 World Cup, the tournament where Hungary made it through the last 16, only to be eliminated by Serbia U20, who then won the crown. Even though he made his first professional appearance in April 2015, his name really came to Hungarian supporters’ notice in the Magyar Kupa (Hungarian Cup) final. The manager, Thomas Doll, surprisingly used him as a starting wide midfielder in the diamond formation. His valuable performance helped his club won 4-0.

Becoming a regular starter at the beginning of the 2015/16 season, Adam Nagy caught the eye of Bernd Storck, and quickly got the call up in early September. He was on the bench in the match against Northern Ireland, but somehow Akos Elek got injured and he came on after 22 minutes. He pulled off an excellent performance, surprising everyone. A bunch of Hungarian newspapers wrote on the day after that he may be one of the best young talents of The Magyars. He hasn’t missed an international match since then, starting in 7 of a total 10 matches, including the first two games at the 2016 European championship, before being rested in the last match against Portugal.

He primarily starts as a centre midfielder in a 4-2-3-1 formation of Bernd Storck’s side, partnering the 37-year-old Zoltan Gera, yet frequently dropping deep to be instrumental in the build-up play. Nagy does that more often against weaker teams. His impressive performances made him the most feared man for Portugal before the final match of group F. The Portuguese paper, Record, displayed his image on the front page ahead of someone like Cristiano Ronaldo. Adam Nagy was described as an extremely modest, humble and confident man.

Talent Radar accolades

Style, Strengths and Weaknesses

If there is one word to describe Adam Nagy’s style, it is ‘runner’. With the experience of a futsal player, he never stops demanding the ball. In every match, he moves around, picks up the ball, passes it away and then repeats the cycle. His fitness could last for even 90 minutes of relentless pressing. His style of nonstop running absolutely classifies him as a rare midfielder. UEFA stats revealed that Adam Nagy ranked sixth in the longest distances covered by a player in a single EURO 2016 match, with 12.268 km, against Austria. His running is genuinely useful in the latter stages of a match, when the shape of teams is often not strict anymore. That indicates his work ethic in games. He is barely afraid of covering and backing his teammates when they’re out of position.

Adam Nagy has good ability to be a box-to-box midfielder, although Bernd Storck prefers to use him as a deep-lying playmaker due to his good passing. Despite the fact that Adi can offer decent long balls with both feet as he has shown at FTC, he rarely produces long balls when representing the Hungary team as shown in the first match of the group stages against Austria. He made zero long passes. Although he completed those passes with a percentage of “just” 87%, which isn’t really good for a playmaker, he managed to play against the energetic trio of David Alaba, Julian Baumgartlinger and Zlatko Junuzovic, who also endlessly run all over the pitch. Adi barely joins the attack but when he does, he steps up and creates some good chances, like the through ball, which ripped through Iceland’s defense, to Nemanja Nikolic, who then crossed the ball leading to the own-goal. Adam Nagy also has a reputation for being comfortable with both feet. The way he uses his left foot is more or less like Adam Lallana does. He can dribble, pass or even make a tackle with it like the Liverpool and England midfielder.

As a smart guy who spent 30 months in the Iberian peninsula, Adam Nagy possesses good tactical awareness and technical skill. His first touch ability is something he can be proud of. He can dribble past an opponent with his pace and technical ability, though he doesn’t do it much. He always focuses on positioning and rarely gets caught out of the position. Even if he does, he would retreat real fast to track back the opponent. Adi used to say that his role models are the likes of Andres Iniesta and Sergio Busquets, because of their superb movement and positioning. Besides, he would help his partners on their positioning. Despite being the youngest player at both club and national team level, he isn’t hesitant to yell at them when they’re confused about their position. He once said that he did it many times with Balazs Dzsudzsak. He has good reading of the game but he doesn’t often provide interceptions. Instead, he prefers to position himself right behind the opponent, ready to make a tackle or block passing lanes. In some cases, that’s not the best option though.

Standing at 1.78 metres, Nagy has a pretty thin body, but can generate good tackles, both standing and sliding ones. His rushing style of play sometimes gets him nervous or agitated with misplaced passes. Due to his size, Nagy also struggles a bit in aerial duels. It’s important for him to improve his ability to make interceptions. If he doesn’t add more muscles to his body, it will be easy for opponents in more physical leagues to push him off the ball. To be a deep-lying playmaker, he also needs to enhance his vision and control on the ball. Nevertheless he’s more suitable to be a box-to-box midfielder, given his excellent stamina and work rate. Adi would be more dangerous if he works on the attacking side of the game, making killer passes and creating chances from roughly nothing. As a versatile midfielder, he needs to improve the ability of shooting from distance and scoring goals.

What does the future hold?

There has been interest from all over the Europe for the FTC youngster and the youngster knows that only a move to the West will help him go far in his career though. It will be interesting to see where he ends up after impressing with Hungary at the European Championship.


Written by Hurong Xuan Binh

Hurong Xuan Binh

As a football journalist in Vietnam, I'm interested in many aspects of football like law, stats, analysis, tactics, scouts and so on. Aside from Vietnam football league, I generally cover Japan football league, EPL, La Liga, and sometimes BuLi and Serie A.

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