This winter break, Jax Hundt stayed on campus and spent his time training with the GCAFC First Team.
Jax has had the opportunity to train with the Firsts before, but this time he was able to spend even more time with the team and coaching staff.
"Getting my initial chance to be a part of the First Team’s game subs was proof that hard work pays off! Before that I had had the privilege to practice with them a few times and then I had the honor to be a part of the team on game day versus Bristol City. The atmosphere and pace are exactly what I have been looking forward to. I respect their competitive nature because it reflects my own. I long for the physicality and aggressive level of their play."
Jax isn't the only UDA student-athlete who has been able to train with the First Team. We've had several student-athletes who have all been invited to spend a few training sessions at the next level.
Over winter break, Jax trained with the First Team during every practice. "I got to warm-up with them twice before their games and I even traveled to an away game with their captain Hanksy and Spencer. I always feel welcomed by the players and coaches. The way they prepare before the games is similar to a whole elite training session. I definitely feel like I belong and fit in as a part of the team and I am extremely excited for more opportunities to play with the first team and to get to have big moments with them!"
Thank you Jax for sharing your winter break experience with us! This is just one example of the opportunities our student-athletes have when they take their university and soccer experience abroad.
After an extensive search, we are pleased to announce that Ryan Davies who holds a B.Sc Sports Coaching from the University of South Wales is joining the UDA Academy at the University of Gloucestershire on December 1st.
Mal Saville, Program Director at UDA Gloucester and John Dyke, Program Director at UDA Chester oversaw the process and helped select Ryan from a pool of exceptional candidates.
Ryan joins us from Cardiff City Football Club where he held the position as Foundation Phase Academy Coach and Multi Sport Coach for the Community Foundation.
During his time at Cardiff, Ryan was the Talent Identification Scout, Head of Development Centre, and held various coaching positions.
He also has experience working as the Head of Women's and Girls' Football at Merthyr Town Football Club, as well as the Women's First Team Manager.
Outside of working closely with our Program Director, Ryan will work with all UDA students in the Academy. He will be primarily responsible for the UDA development team in the Hellenic league but will offer technical and functional sessions to all UDA students as needed.
As a coach with a degree in sports coaching, Ryan will also oversee strength and conditioning, offer sports psychology, and diet and nutrition sessions.
Welcome to UDA, Ryan!
➡️ Read more about Ryan's credentials.
Gloucester City Women have reached the Third Qualifying Round of the Women’s FA Cup for the first time, following a 2-0 win over Bath City Women – in front of a record crowd at the TigerTurf Stadium.
Goals from Kally Lloyd and Rakiya Morgan-King were enough to see Gloucester claim victory in a fairly scrappy cup tie, as an attendance of 187 looked on.
The attendance is the third time this season that Gloucester City Women have broken their own record, having seen crowds of 142 and 150 in their two previous home matches.
Alongside the crowd numbers, City have now beaten their best run in the Women’s FA Cup, which came in the 2021/22 season, when they were beaten at this stage by Ilminster Town.
The hosts started fast, with Maggie Neall sending a free kick over the bar inside the first three minutes.
Then on 11 minutes a corner was swung into the box and Kally Lloyd’s header looped up and landed over the line, despite a scramble of bodies trying to keep it out.
The goal settled City down and it should have been made two soon after, but Meg Prout did everything right bar the finish after shrugging off a defender, before sliding an effort off the foot of the far post.
Prout went close again just before half time, but skied her effort from Lloyd’s pull back.
Beth Davies dribbled forward from midfield on the brink of the break, but her effort was deflected wide for a corner.
It hadn’t been a typically efficient City performance, but they were ahead at the break.
Paige Todd found herself in down the left moments after the restart, but flashed her effort across goal, before Lloyd found herself in a similar position on the right hand side, but had her effort blocked by the feet of Bath City keeper, Sadie Farley.
Farley was called into action again just after the hour mark, as she palmed a header away as City went in search of their second.
Todd skipped past her marker again moments later after cutting the ball across goal from the byline, substitute Kacie Anderson somehow turned the ball wide from about two yards.
The longer the game stayed 1-0, the more nervy the TigerTurf Stadium became in the final quarter of an hour – especially after Bath began to push further forward.
Tara Taylor tested Ashli Whitbury with a curling effort from the edge of the box.
With five minutes left on the clock, Todd found space down the left again and crossed for Morgan-King, who produced a great first touch to create space to blast home past Farley.
The victory earns Gloucester City Women a place in the hat for the Third Qualifying Round draw, with the next round on Sunday 22 October and takes their earnings for this season’s cup run to a guaranteed £5800 as it stands.
Next up for Gloucester City Women is a tough test with the visit of Bitton Ladies to the TigerTurf Stadium, next weekend.
Gloucester City Women: Whitbury, Golding, Neall, Davies, Lloyd, Todd, Slanina-Wertz, Fuks, Ross, Esplin, Prout
Subs: Ambrey, Kantorowicz, Lewis, Morgan-King, Anderson, Simmons, Hancock
Bath City Women: Farley, Wells, Bellotti, Gray, Harris, Taylor, Harvey, Key, Goater, Wright, Sabic
Subs: Black, Jefferies
C Martin Roofing Player of the Match – Ainsley Fuks (Gloucester City Women)
At UDA, our commitment to student success goes beyond the pitch. To help our students develop personal and professional growth during their university experience and beyond, we developed the Dream Maker Program alongside the UDA SUCCESS Foundation.
The Dream Maker Program is dedicated to fostering the personal and professional growth of our student-athletes, helping them collaborate with their universities’ career and employability resources so they can grow their employability opportunities post graduation.
Developed and led by Dr. Scott Johnson, in alignment with the visionary goals set by UDA founder Dr. Brian Haley, this program aims to equip UDA students with the skills and knowledge necessary to excel in their chosen fields.
The UDA Circle of Success
The Dream Maker Program is designed to provide UDA students with a holistic approach to personal and professional development. By offering mentorship, guidance, and resources, the program sets UDA students on a path to success. From their university studies to post-graduation, students benefit from the expertise and support provided by the program.
Supporting Career DevelopmenT
The Dream Maker Program collaborates closely with the Careers Offices and Employability Resources of universities our students attend. This collaboration offers our students ongoing individual student relationships, group conversations, presentations, support building a portfolio, application guidance, job search tools, and advice and insight from alumni and industry experts.
With these resources, our students are prepared with the necessary tools to navigate the job market successfully.
Meet Dr. Scott Johnson, CEO of the UDA SUCCESS Foundation
Heading the Dream Maker Program is Dr. Scott Johnson. Holding a Ph.D. in management and marketing from Arizona State University, an MBA in international business from the University of San Francisco, and a BS in business administration-marketing from California State University, Fresno, Dr. Johnson brings a diverse range of knowledge to the program.
Having taught at the University of Greenwich in the UK, Dr. Johnson has a deep understanding of the European academic landscape. His experience in designing professional development and leadership courses, building external partnerships, and conducting assessment centers and team-building activities for students has equipped him with invaluable insights into employability.
Dr. Johnson's extensive background as a marketing executive and his three-decade-long tenure as a professor, program director, and business school Dean have allowed him to advise hundreds of students on career preparation and oversee their internships. By leveraging each student's unique experiences and strengths, Dr. Johnson fosters their career readiness competencies through supportive feedback and networking opportunities.
Our Dream Maker Program demonstrates our commitment to the comprehensive development of our student-athletes. Through close collaboration with universities, personalized mentorship, and access to industry insights, the program equips UDA students with the skills and knowledge necessary for success.
Under the guidance of Dr. Scott Johnson, the Dream Maker Program has become a cornerstone of UDA's commitment to empowering its students both during their university journey and beyond.
For more information about the Dream Maker Program, please reach out to Dr. Scott Johnson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We are thrilled to announce the inaugural First Annual UDA All-Star Iceland Showcase! In January 2024, top players from UDA Soccer Academies in the USA and UK will gather in the land of ice and fire for an extraordinary display of talent and sportsmanship.
Taking place in Iceland, renowned for its rich football culture and breathtaking landscapes, this event promises to be a true celebration of UDA Soccer excellence. From captivating matches against elite Icelandic U19 teams to immersive training sessions with esteemed Icelandic coaches, our players will have the opportunity to shine on a global stage.
But the UDA All-Star Iceland Showcase isn't just about the competition. It's a journey of cultural exploration and personal growth. Participants will embark on the unforgettable "Golden Circle Tour," visiting iconic natural wonders such as Thingvellir, Geysir, and Gullfoss. They will also indulge in relaxation and rejuvenation at The Sky Lagoon, a remarkable geothermal pool and spa.
UDA Soccer is proud to provide this incredible opportunity for our talented returning athletes to showcase their skills, gain exposure, and create lasting memories.
We can't wait to witness the magic unfold on the pitches of Iceland!
UDA Soccer - Pathway to the Professional Game.
Thursday, January 4 –
Friday, January 5 –
Saturday, January 6 –
Sunday January 7 –
Monday January 8 –
Man City vs Bayern Munich
UDA at the University of Gloucestershire were fortunate to secure 26 tickets for the above game.
Players, staff, and parents were in attendance!
Even though it was a cold, wet, and windy day in North West England, the football on show certainly lit up our faces, but sadly not the skies!
We started our journey with a huddle of Manchester City fans on board, with others reminiscing about past glories about their team, or future potential glories!
The buoyant mood of the group could be heard above the chorus of "Blue Moon" playing over the speakers.
"This is by far the best live game I've ever seen." said Dave Nichols, Head of Coaching.
Although it was a long day, departing at 2:00 pm and returning back on campus at 2:30 am, we hope to do it again for the semi-final.
Will it be the mighty Real Madrid, or Chelsea?
Recently, Aidan Harris, one of our UDA Gloucester goalkeepers was asked to train with the Gloucester City AFC First Team.
We welcomed recruits from across the country to spend 10 days with us to learn more about UDA, the University of Gloucestershire, Gloucester City AFC, and get a taste of British culture during our Women's Thanksgiving Tour!
This week was designed to provide students what a first-hand view of what it's like to study, train and play with UDA.
Throughout the course of the week our recruits met both UDA, UoG, and Gloucester City AFC staff. During this time together they were able to ask their burning questions and get an up-close view into what opportunities UDA student-athletes have.
Outside of competing in games, attending training sessions, and getting a feel for GCAFC, our students were able to dive into British culture. The tour included trips to Warwick Castle, Stratford Upon Avon, and Gloucester City Cathedral.
Some students and their families arrived early to explore London before heading to Gloucester!
If you're ready to dive into the UDA student-athlete experience and find a place where you'll live, study, and thrive, this tour is for you.
Learn more about our 2023 tour
In less than a month, the UDA UoG team will be stepping onto the pitch. After much preparation, we are so excited to welcome the new players and their families!
This season, the Gloucester City U21 team will enter the newly named Herefordshire Football League which will add 18 additional teams to their division this year.
Recapping the 2022 UoG Summer TOur
Our first UoG Summer Tour was a success! Last week the students and their families returned home after almost ten days of experiencing UDA, the University of Gloucestershire, and the UK.