SAN JOSE, Calif. – The San Jose Earthquakes announced today that the club has signed 16-year-old midfielder Niko Tsakiris (chuh-KARE-us) to a Homegrown Player contract through the 2025 season with a club option for 2026. He becomes the 10th product of the Quakes Academy to sign with the First Team, the ninth such signing since December of 2016, and the second such signing this week. He is the fifth youngest player in club history.

“Niko is an incredibly promising young player that we integrated into First Team training sessions throughout the 2021 season in preparation for this opportunity,” said Earthquakes General Manager Chris Leitch. “We’ve always been impressed by his soccer intelligence and technical skill as an attacking player and have a development plan in place to help him reach his potential in San Jose. I’d like to thank his parents Shaun and Nyssa for their support throughout this process.”

Tsakiris competed for local side De Anza Force Soccer Club before moving to Florida and joining IMG Academy at 10 years old. He returned to the Bay Area two years later in 2017 and joined the Quakes Academy soon after. In addition to starring for the Quakes, often up an age level, Tsakiris earned a call-up to a United States U15 Boys’ National Team camp alongside teammate and fellow Homegrown Emi Ochoa in March 2020.

“I’m thankful for the opportunity and humbled by it,” said Tsakiris. “I’m looking forward to being a part of this group and growing along with the team. I can’t wait to get started.”

The Saratoga, Calif. native and Los Gatos High School student is the son of U.S. U20 Boys’ National Team assistant coach Shaun Tsakiris, who also previously served as head coach for the U.S. U15s and U16s. He is currently ranked by TopDrawerSoccer as the No. 2 player in the Northern California and Hawaii region for the Class of 2024, as well as the No. 9 midfielder nationally.

San Jose currently has eight Homegrown Players on its roster, with Tsakiris joining goalkeepers JT Marcinkowski and Emi Ochoa, defenders Tommy Thompson and Casey Walls, midfielders Gilbert Fuentes and Will Richmond, and forward Cade Cowell.

Niko Tsakiris


Position: Midfielder

Height: 5-10

Weight: 155 lbs.

Born: June 19, 2005, in Saratoga, Calif.

Preferred Foot: Left

Hometown: Saratoga, Calif.

Previous Club: Quakes Academy

College: N/A

Roster Designation: Domestic, Homegrown

Citizenship: USA

Transaction: San Jose Earthquakes (MLS) – Earthquakes sign 16-year-old M Niko Tsakiris to a Homegrown Player contract through 2025 with a club option for 2026.