FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – Two short months ago Edward Kizza was selected with the 24th overall pick in the 2021 MLS SuperDraft, and he entered New England Revolution preseason camp aiming to earn a roster spot. Fast forward to early March and Kizza had signed his first professional contract.
“I think this is everybody’s dream," said Kizza. "Coming from Uganda to go here, it’s been a process.
“This is very exciting for me. It’s something I dreamed of since I was young and signing with this wonderful club, it’s a blessing. I’m truly happy to be here and I’m excited to see what’s to come.”
Kizza has only been training at the professional level for a few weeks and he's yet to face MLS opposition in a game setting, but head coach Bruce Arena already sees potential in the young striker.
“He's a good player,” said Arena. “He's a pure number nine. He's very good in the penalty area, which you want a number nine to do. His running off the ball is excellent. He has consistently scored goals to date in our preseason training, so it'll be interesting to see how he does when we go against some other competition.”
Kizza bagged an impressive 31 goals in a three-year career at the University of Pittsburgh – including 27 goals in 38 appearances over his final two seasons – and was widely considered one of the best attacking talents in the 2021 draft class. Kizza now looks to build upon his college experiences and apply them at the professional level.
“Everybody here at this level is very strong, is very fast, is very technical and the game is so fast,” Kizza said about his adjustment to MLS. “For me, I think it’s just been thinking about the game and playing fast, quick, one-two touch, moving and stuff. I think that’s been the biggest challenge for me.”
Kizza approaches preseason eager to learn, viewing every opportunity in training as a chance to grow.
“Everything is a learning process,” said Kizza. “I’m going to keep evolving … My teammates have been there helping and encouraging me throughout practices. They’ve always been supportive in the locker room and on the field – and the coaching staff, they are always helping me out to be the person I want to be.
“I think that’s the biggest thing for me, getting better every single game.”