Orlando City SC has acquired 2021 CONCACAF Gold Cup champion Nicholas “Niko” Gioacchini from Stade Malherbe Caen of France’s Ligue 2, it was announced today. The 21-year-old winger/forward joins the Lions on a two-and-a-half year contract with a Club option in 2025, pending receipt of his ITC.
“Niko is an exciting young player that has a great ability to break lines and has a keen eye for goal,” said EVP of Soccer Operations and General Manager Luiz Muzzi. “He’s begun to work his way into the national team pool already and we look forward to him furthering his young career with us here in Orlando.”
“[Orlando is] a place where I felt at home. A Club with a history of being very family-like and the fans…The fans, the stadium, it’s a place where there’s a lot of energy and that’s for sure a part of the reason I decided to come,” Gioacchini said. “[Playing in MLS is] one of the parts I’m most excited about. Coming home, that feeling of coming back to my home country and getting the experience to play against the rising MLS and being a part of it. That’s a great feeling.”
A product of Paris FC’s youth academy system, Gioacchini joined SM Caen ahead of their 2019 Ligue 2 season, most recently spending the 2021/22 season on loan at Montpellier HSC in Ligue 1. Gioacchini has totaled 88 appearances, with 12 goals and four assists across all competitions since beginning his professional career.
A native of Kansas City, Mo., the American has appeared on the international stage for the U.S. Men’s National Team, making his senior debut on Nov. 12, 2020 in a scoreless draw against Wales. Gioacchini has since registered eight caps, scoring three goals and providing two assists for the U.S., including five appearances, one goal and one helper in the Gold Cup.