JAMES Collins is unlikely to be converted into a central midfielder any time soon, despite being given two run-outs in the role in pre-season.

The striker, who was also used in the position in the latter moments of the 3-3 play-off semi-final second leg draw with Brentford in May, pulled the strings in the middle of the park against both Swindon Supermarine and Banbury United last week.

However, Swindon Town manager Kevin MacDonald has revealed that the decision to use Collins as a playmaker rather than a goal-getter was purely needs-must, with the former Shrewsbury man looking to up his fitness levels in the build-up to the new term.

“He likes to get his fitness through games and he’s done fine,” said MacDonald. “What you’re trying to do is give the other players – like the trialist strikers – the best chance they can get in their preferred position.

“We know what James can do up front so if he can build on his fitness levels around the pitch and build his awareness around the pitch then that’s fine.”

Meanwhile, the Advertiser understands Nathan Byrne will put pen to paper on a deal at Town this week, ending a protracted move which was first confirmed by chairman Jed McCrory at a fans’ forum in April.