By Logan Smith
Title-chasing Christchurch United and Cashmere Technical are among the Southern League clubs to strengthen their squads ahead of the transfer deadline.
Both made key signings before the June 30 deadline.
Here are some of the most significant moves in the Southern League:
Yuya Taguchi (Cumberland United to Cashmere Technical)
After departing early last year for Cumberland United in South Australia, Japanese forward Yuya Taguchi (26) is back at Cashmere Technical where he previously won the 2021 Chatham Cup, and joins amid tough competitions for places in the front pack.
Technical are two points off Christchurch United having played one game more, so will certainly hope that Taguchi can lift their season and deny United from winning consecutive titles.
Sanni Issa (Rewa FA to Christchurch United)
Well-travelled Nigerian goalscorer Sanni Issa (31) returns to Christchurch United after a spell with Rewa FA in Fiji, as the side looks to push on for the Southern League title and perform well in the National League Championship.
He’ll look to add to his eleven-goal tally in the Southern League from last year.
He’s previously played Northern League football with Birkenhead United and Manukau United.
Main photo: Eddie Wilkinson … returns from Australia to help Christchurch United’s title push.
Eddie Wilkinson (Eastern Lions to Christchurch United)
Eddie Wilkinson (23) is also among the additions at Christchurch United, coming back to the club after a spell with Eastern Lions in Australia.
Having scored 26 Southern League goals across 2021 and 2022, United will be delighted to have such an explosive and clinical player such as Wilkinson back.
Connor Gillespie (Nelson Suburbs to Miramar Rangers)
After a short but sweet spell at Nelson Suburbs, Scottish forward Connor Gillespie (26) has left for Central League football with Miramar Rangers, and already appeared for them off the bench against Stop Out last weekend.
Gillespie bagged seven league goals and seven Chatham Cup goals for Nelson Suburbs, but leaves with them still placed 6th in the Southern League.
Nikolas Fairley and Will Fairley (FC Twenty 11 to Nomads United)
Having left Selwyn for FC Twenty 11 at the start of the season, brothers Nikolas and Will Fairley are on the move again, and have now signed for Nomads United.
Both appeared and scored for Nomads reserve side on the weekend, and look likely to move into the first team for the rest of their Southern League campaign.
Mason Stearn (West Virginia United to Christchurch United)
Christchurch-born midfielder Mason Stearn (23) is back from playing college soccer in the USA at the University of Indianapolis, and joins Christchurch United for their Southern League title charge and National League Championship campaign.
The former Canterbury United Youth, Halswell United and Nomads United man will hope to force his way into a competitive Christchurch United midfield.
Logan Smith is a passionate football fan and volunteer, based in Dunedin, covering the Southern League.