Adam Buksa: Transfer from New England Revolution to Lens proved doubters wrong

Adam Buksa is officially an RC Lens player after last week's reported $10 million transfer, but first came a formal goodbye to the club that helped spark his Ligue 1 move.

The Polish international forward attended the New England Revolution’s 1-1 draw Wednesday night against Orlando City SC, a Gillette Stadium sendoff before the World Cup hopeful tackles the 2022-23 campaign in Europe.

And the 25-year-old was in a reflective mood about his time in MLS, joining New England in December 2019 as a Designated Player who ultimately tallied 29 goals and eight assists across 64 league appearances.

“In the beginning, when I signed for the Revolution, there were many opinions, especially in Europe and in Poland, with people doubting this move, that it doesn’t necessarily have to be the right step for me,” Buksa said on New England’s postgame broadcast.

“I’m happy to prove them wrong because I improved, I developed as a player and I think I also showed that it’s a very good league for young players to develop. I’m pretty sure there will be more transfers coming to MLS from Europe.”

Buksa originally joined the Revs from Ekstraklasa (Polish first division) side Pogoń Szczecin, arriving on a reported $4 million transfer fee. He became their third DP alongside forward Gustavo Bou and midfielder Carles Gil, a trio that proved ever-dangerous as New England won the 2021 Supporters’ Shield and accrued a league-record 73 points during the regular season.

Buksa’s national team profile blossomed as well, helping Poland qualify for Qatar 2022 as a key option behind Bayern Munich superstar Robert Lewandowski. He has five goals across nine caps.

All that, Buksa said, was the byproduct of developing into a true No. 9 under Bruce Arena and his coaching staff.

“My game, my style has a little bit changed,” Buksa said. “We worked – especially the first year was a tough year, a pandemic year. It was time to adapt, to adjust to the league. We paid a lot of attention to positioning myself on the field. I had to play closer to the goal. I had to become more like a typical No. 9; that was a little bit different than my style that I’ve played in Poland.”

By transferring Buksa to Lens, New England now have an open DP spot to work with during the MLS Secondary Transfer Window (runs July 7 to Aug. 4). Arena has said the Revs are “actively looking at potential” signings, setting up a potentially transformative summer for a club that’s become a bigger player on the international market.

As New England reload, like when winger Tajon Buchanan (to Belgium’s Club Brugge) and goalkeeper Matt Turner (to England’s Arsenal) both departed, Buksa is confident that success will continue.

“We accomplished great things, especially in the season 2021 when we won the Supporters’ Shield and we broke the [points] record,” Buksa said. “So I think there is more to come for the team, for me personally as well. Now my new adventure begins in Europe. I’m very happy for that and I’m also very excited to see how Revs win MLS Cup very soon. I’m sure of that.”