FC Cincinnati have acquired midfielder Pavel Bucha [pah-VELL boo-KUH] from FC Viktoria Plzeň of the Czech First League via transfer, the club announced today. Bucha, 25, joins the Orange and Blue through 2026, with a club option for 2027.
“We’re thrilled to welcome Pavel to the club,” said Chris Albright, FC Cincinnati General Manager. “His understanding of the game, ability to cover ground, and experience at the top-levels of European soccer make him a valuable addition. He’s also an exceptional teammate who will fit seamlessly into the group.”
Bucha brings to Cincinnati over 200 professional appearances with clubs in his native Czech Republic. Primarily playing in the central midfield, Bucha has spent part of each of the past six seasons with FC Viktoria Plzeň, netting 27 goals and 21 assists in 163 appearances for the club and claiming the 2021/22 Czech First League Title.
In the current 2023/24 season, Bucha has made 30 appearances across all competitions for Viktoria Plzeň, scoring six goals and adding one assist. He appeared in all six matches for his club in the UEFA Conference League Group Stage, where the Czech side advanced to the Conference League Knockout Stage with six wins and a perfect 18 points from their group.
“I am proud to finally be a part of this team,” said Bucha. “I feel great and very welcome here, and I am excited about working with this group of players and coaches. I cannot wait to get this season started.”
Last season, Bucha set career highs with 41 starts in 45 total appearances across all competitions for Viktoria Plzeň, scoring five goals and six assists.
The Mělník, Czech Republic native started in 26 of 27 regular season games for Viktoria Plzeň in 2021/22 to help the Czech club advance to the end-of-season First League Championship Group, when he started in four of five playoff matches to help his side raise their sixth First League title in 12 seasons.
After winning the league title in 2021/22, Bucha’s club advanced to last season’s qualifying stage for the 2022/23 UEFA Champions League, where he started in all six qualifiers to help the club advance to the Champions League Group Stage. Bucha made five UCL Group Stage appearances with Viktoria Plzeň drawn in Group C against Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Inter Milan.
In total, Bucha has made 33 appearances in international UEFA competition, scoring three goals and adding three assists.
Bucha spent the end of the 2018/19 season and the beginning of the 2019/20 season on loan with Czech club FK Mladá Boleslav. He scored eight goals and seven assists with the First League club.
Prior to his July 2018 transfer to FC Viktoria Plzeň, Bucha made his professional debut on February 17, 2018 with SK Slavia Prague after coming up with the organization’s youth system. He made five first-team appearances with the club.
Bucha has made 17 appearances at the youth international level for Czech Republic. He earned 14 caps with the Czech Republic U-21 National Team, including starting all three matches for his country at the 2021 UEFA European U-21 Championship. He was called up to the senior team in October 2021 for FIFA World Cup Qualification.
TRANSACTION: On Feb. 7, 2024, FC Cincinnati acquire midfielder Pavel Bucha from FC Viktoria Plzeň of the Czech First League via transfer. Bucha signs a contract with FC Cincinnati through 2026, with a club option for 2027.