Russia and Hungary got their respective campaigns off to a winning start, defeating Serbia and Turkey respectively in their opening fixtures.
Both the sides looked solid in their wins and will be looking to build on that to open up a gap over their opponents in Group 3. Sbornaya have been the dominant team in recent meetings between the two sides and Hungary will be itching to change the status quo on Sunday.
Russia is among the 16 teams that have already secured a spot at Euro 2021. Meanwhile, the Magyars will be pinning their hopes of qualification on the Nations League playoffs, which is why every point counts for them.
Hungary vs Russia Head-to-Head
Across all competitions, the two sides have clashed on seven occasions, five of them being international friendlies while the remaining two were World Cup qualifiers. Four of these meetings ended in favour of the Russians while the Hungarians were victorious on two occasions and one game ended in a stalemate.
Interestingly, both of Hungary's wins came more than a century ago during football's fledgeling days when Hungary was one of the strongest teams in the world.
Russia has won four of their previous five meetings, scoring 2.4 goals per game on average as opposed to Hungary's 0.6 goals per game. The visitors also fare better in terms of recent form and have scored 18 goals in their last five outings.
Hungary form guide: W-L-L-W-L
Russia form guide: W-W-L-W-W
Hungary vs Russia Team News
The lockdown between March and June has proven highly beneficial for the players as many of them have recovered from injuries and are now at full fitness as opposed to previous seasons when the international break would see a lengthy casualty list for the Hungarians.
For head coach Marco Rossi, there are no injury concerns heading into the fixture against Russia and he is expected to field the same squad that won him the game against Turkey on Sunday in a variation of his preferred 4-2-3-1.
Goalkeeper Péter Gulácsi, defender Willi Orban, midfielder Dominik Szoboszlai and striker Ádám Szalai are guaranteed starters for the team and will likely play a key role in the game.
Like Hungary, Russia have a fully fit squad heading into the fixture and it is unlikely that head coach Stanislav Cherchesov will make changes to the team that recorded a resounding victory over Serbia this week.
Artem Dzyuba bagged a brace in Russia's 3-1 win over Serbia and has now moved to the second spot in Russia's all-time leading goalscorers list. He is expected to be a major threat against Hungary.
Hungary vs Russia Predicted XI
Hungary predicted XI (4-2-3-1): Péter Gulacsi; Attila Szalai, Ádám Lang, Willi Orban, Attila Fiola; Dávid Siger, Ádám Nagy; Roland Sallai, Dominik Szoboszlai, Filip Holender; Adam Szalai
Russia predicted XI (4-2-3-1): Anton Shunin; Mário Fernandes, Roman Neustädter, Georgi Dzhikiya, Vyacheslav Karavayev; Magomed Ozdoyev, Roman Zobnin; Aleksei Ionov, Anton Miranchuk, Daler Kuzyayev; Artem Dzyuba
Hungary vs Russia Prediction
Russia are enjoying a good run of form and are especially prolific in front of goal. Though they might seem like favourites in their fixture against Hungary, at least on paper, the home side boasts some highly-talented players in its ranks and might prove a handful for Cherchesov's men.
Hungary had a good game against Turkey but failed to convert chances and this wastefulness could prove to be their undoing against a rampant Russian side. We expect a low scoring game with a win for Russia on Sunday.
Prediction: Hungary 0-2 Russia.Published 04 Sep 2020, 19:59 IST