Christchurch United FC.  One Club.  One Dream.

+64 21 446 212

9am-7pm closed Sunday

Unity - Respect - Discipline - Intelligence - Responsibility - Passion
Christchurch United's Female Academy
We are delighted to announce the establishment of our Female Academy for 2022.

Our Female Academy offers all of the benefits and advantages found in our Pre-Academy and High Performance Academy, including world-class training facilities, industry-leading technology, plus qualified and professional coaches with decades of playing and coaching experience.

Our goal is to provide the very best footballing opportunities for all girls and women from 4 - 20 years old.
The Club produced a number of great players including 44 who went on to play for the All Whites.

Steve Sumner and Ryan Nelsen were the captains of the NZ National teams at the 1982 and 2010 World Cups.
Christchurch Football Academy, located at Yaldhurst, has been operating since the 17th of March 2014 as the first South Island club offering year-round training for football players.

In 2016, Christchurch United Football Academy merged with Christchurch United Football Club, which was recognized as the best club in New Zealand between 1970-1995.

CUFC was one of the founding clubs of the New Zealand National Soccer League in 1970.

They won six National League Titles, six English Cups, and six Chatham Cups. Including the two famous doubles in 1975 and 1991.

After the signing of Samoa Women's national team Head Coach Paul Ifill, our Female Academy was established in early 2022.
Christchurch United Football Academy
Christchurch United Football Club: One Club, One Dream
Our coaching staff is made up of professional and qualified coaches with experience in professional football. We teach young women to strive for victory, discipline, endurance, sportsmanship, and teamwork.
Football All Year Round
Football isn't just a winter sport at Christchurch United. We play in all four seasons, with only the most extreme weather cancelling games and practices.
State-Of-The-Art Facilities
Games and trainings take place on our 2-Star FIFA Certified Artificial pitches, the best of its kind.
Tournaments and Competitions
Our players regularly take part in all top level domestic competitions, across the entire country.
Qualified Coaches
Christchurch United is proud to employ a team of dedicated and knowledgeable coaches, both of which have played professional football in domestic and international leagues.

Our coaching staff are constantly improving their skills through online courses developed by our partners TOVO Academy Barcelona, and DoublePass Belgium.
Paul Ifill
Head of Female Academy
First Team Head Coach
Former Professional Player
  • Paul began his playing career in 1997 at Saltdean United in Brighton & Hove, England.
  • Before he arrived at Christchurch United, Paul's coaching history includes the Samoan women's national team and Wairarapa United, as well as an assistant coach for Tasman United and Hawkes Bay United.
  • Paul has played over 340 combined matches in the top English football leagues, with stints at Millwall, Sheffield United, and Crystal Palace.
  • He then joined the Wellington Phoenix in 2009, and netted 33 goals in 106 appearances for the club.
  • As an international, Paul represented Barbados from 2004 - 2008. In 2006, he scored 6 goals in 6 games to ensure Barbados' qualification for the Gold Cup.
  • Paul played as a forward during his career, mostly as a right midfielder / winger and center forward.
Annie Gilchrist
CWCL Head Coach
Former Canterbury Pride Player
  • Played three seasons for the Canterbury Pride.

Christchurch United is delighted to welcome former Canterbury Pride stalwart Annie Gilchrist to our Coaching Team.

CUFC Head of Female Academy Paul Ifill spoke on Annie's appointment: "We are delighted to announce Annie as our Head Coach for CWCL. Annie has had an excellent career as a player, and we look forward to her passing her knowledge and experience to the next generation of players coming through at CUFC."

Annie is now the Head Coach of our CWCL Team, and will be working closely with Paul to prepare our team for the upcoming Canterbury Women's Championship League.

James McClay
U4 - U12 Head of Program
Open Trainings Coach
2021 CUFC First Team Captain
  • TOVO V1 Course: TOVO Methodology
  • TOVO 7 A-Side Online Coaching Course
  • Central Attacking Midfielder
  • First Team player
  • James came from the North of Ireland. In New Zealand he has been lived and worked in Nelson. He played for Nelson Suburbs and Tasman United while also working in the Academy space with players from 8 - 16 years old. James also worked with the Nelson Suburbs U16 team and coached the first division team.
  • Hobbies include playing golf, darts and watching live sport.
About Our Programs
Our programs provide young women an opportunity to discover football, refine their skills, and take their talents to the next level.

We run programs for all age groups and skill levels, from those who have little experience with the sport all the way to the Canterbury Women's Championship League.
Register for a free open training today!