SWINDON Town are close to deals to bring in two experienced players to the squad, with manager Richie Wellens hopeful the first will be completed prior to Saturday’s trip to Tranmere Rovers.

Town’s business so far in the January transfer window has been to sign youngsters Canice Carroll, Ben House and Ali Koiki on loan until the end of the season.

However, permanent signings are now Wellens’ priority as the Town boss looks to bolster his squad with senior figures.

Wellens revealed the club are well down the road with recruiting two fresh faces – the first of which is expected to be wrapped up before the club make the trip to Prenton Park this weekend for their next League Two assignment.

“We are close to one and I am hoping we will get it over the line,” said Wellens.

“If we can, he will be in the squad for Saturday.

“There is also another one that we thought we would have, but that looks like it will probably run into next week.

“It is just typical things that slow it down – clubs not wanting to release players without having a replacement and agents wanting certain amounts of money, which delays it a little bit more.

“They are just things you have to go through.”

Wellens is also continuing to work on a deal to bring defender Sid Nelson back to the Energy Check County Ground, with the 22-year-old having returned to parent club Millwall after the expiration of his loan at the start of this month.

A permanent deal remains Wellens’ priority, but that is proving difficult to complete at present, meaning the Town boss is monitoring other targets too.

“We are trying with Sid, but it is proving difficult,” said Wellens.

“We have got another target in mind and we are trying to go there as well.

“We would still like Sid as he is a good kid, the fans like him and he is whole-hearted and committed and he wants to be here – that’s one of the main things.

“We will keep trying, but it is proving difficult.

“I want to try to do a permanent deal. I don’t like the fact that we have loan players and we develop them and make them better and then they disappear back to their own clubs.”

Wellens has already added one new name to the Town camp this week, with Peter Shirtliff returning to the club as a coach.

The 57-year-old previously served as assistant manager under Danny Wilson between 2009 and 2011.

Wellens said: “I was looking for someone with experience who sees the game differently to me, to come in on a daily basis.

“Pete is much calmer than me. Sometimes when I am taking sessions or on the sidelines, I can be 100mph. Pete is more experienced and can stand back and see things.

“Sometimes as a manager, you can get clouded opinions of certain things. When you are a coach, you can see things a lot clearer.

“That’s what I am expecting of him – little words of advice and scenarios that he sees, and then we can bounce off each other.”