Polish newcomer Bartosz Slisz looking to “go forward” in MLS 


Bartosz Slisz is very mature for just 24 years old.

The club’s latest addition introduced himself to Atlanta media Tuesday morning. Slisz took questions from reporters in-person at the Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta Training Ground. The soft-spoken 24-year-old answered with a confidence and humility that explains why vice president and technical director Carlos Bocanegra described Slisz as “mature beyond his years."

“I’m happy that I’m here and the welcome was very, very warm,” Slisz said Tuesday. “The first day was really great for me. Everyone here is kind. I’m happy. It’s a beginning for me.”

Originally from Poland, the midfielder joins the club from Legia Warsaw a team in Poland’s first division. There, Slisz was a member of two championship teams.

As a professional, Slisz has played more than 250 matches in his career. He's expected to play the role of defensive midfielder on the pitch and said that he will bring qualities to help both Atlanta's backline and the attack.

“I’m like a number 6,” he said. “I hope I will help the team because last season we were only in the sixth position, so I think it’s not enough for this club, for this team. So, this season for sure we will go for the championship.”

Before joining the club, Slisz did his homework to understand more about what to expect. He said he hadn’t watched many Atlanta United games, citing the challenge of catching live matches across many time zones, but viewed highlights to understand what kind of style the team played. He also spoke with MLS players from Poland, such as Karol Świderski of Charlotte FC, to learn about the facilities and living in the United States.

“When I came here, for sure I almost knew everything about this city, about this club, because I wanted to know where I was going,” Slisz said. “It’s a good decision. It’s a step to go forward and make progress.”

In terms of learning to play with Atlanta United, there was one thing that stuck out to Slisz when watching clips of his new team: the attack.

“Atlanta is always on offense,” he said. “When I watched the highlights, it was like 80 percent of these highlights, Atlanta was on offense. I know this coach also likes to play offensive football.”

Slisz said his attacking quality has improved in the last few years, recording 10 goals and 16 assists across all competitions, and it can go even further playing with Atlanta United. There will be a transition on the defensive side as he goes from playing with a backline of three to four, which Atlanta United has played a lot of, but the 24-year-old feels confident about his ability to play with different formations and adapt to his new team.

“It’s a matter of time and after the camp, for sure, I’ll be ready,” he said.

Slisz is part of a crop of Atlanta United players signed with the club multiple years into the future. Midfielder Tristan Muyumba signed with the club through the 2027 season and fellow new international Stian Gregersen signed through the 2027 season, with an option for 2028. Several prominent players are signed through 2026, including Saba Lobjanidze, last season’s leading goal scorer Giorgos Giakoumakis and Atlanta United 2 standout Nick Firmino.

Adding Slisz to the mix means his face will be part of the club for years to come. For that, the new addition said he is grateful the club wants to invest in him longterm.

“It’s a long time, so I have a lot of time to adapt,” Slisz said. “I see also that the club builds this team a little bigger and a little better, that a lot of players came in this window. I hope that we will qualify for the championship.”

While he’s waiting for his visa to be approved, which will allow him to train with the team, Slisz is making the most out of Atlanta. He explained that during his first few days here, he didn’t have many things to do. He got his medical tests done, then didn’t waste a minute, taking time to explore and get to know his new home.

“I explored Piedmont Park, Buckhead, Ponce [City] Market,” he said. “I like the city. The life here is very nice. My fiancée is also happy we can be here. She also thinks everything will be good. The next step for us is to be not just a better player but better people.”

Training photos: Week of January 22
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