YORK City boss Sam Collins has earmarked two potential loan signings to strengthen his ranks during the final four months of the season.

The Minstermen currently have five borrowed players (the permitted number in a matchday squad) on their books – Liam Agnew, Alex Bray, Joe Davis, Kennedy Digie and Joe Ironside – but Collins expects “a couple” to return to their parent clubs following Saturday’s National League North trip to Curzon Ashton.

Aside from Agnew, the other players’ current temporary terms will expire after this weekend and a series of comings and goings could then be overseen before the Minstermen’s next match a fortnight later at Stockport.

On the loan situation, Collins said: “There might be a couple of players that go back and that will help us in terms of bringing others in. I also feel the areas we need to strengthen now are different than they were before.

“Hopefully, we can bring in the targets we have in mind, because I think they will really strengthen us again. They are young players with the right attitudes, who want to do well.

“There are a couple that I’ve known for a long, long time and, if one comes off, I’d be absolutely delighted, because he’s a really good kid, who is energetic, works hard and plays in an area where we are a bit light on bodies.”

City look likely to be without Simon Heslop at Curzon after he suffered a back injury during the 4-0 New Year’s Day home victory over Darlington on his return to the first XI following knee surgery in mid-October.

Macaulay Langstaff is doubtful too due to a groin niggle, meaning Collins could be forced into a couple of unwanted changes, although the City chief went on to point out that, with Kennedy Digie fit again and Kallum Griffiths in with a chance of being in contention, he would have possibly looked to reshuffle his pack despite the club’s biggest league win in 17 months.

“I’ve gone with the same team after a good performance before, sometimes against my better judgement, and then not got the same standards, so I don’t want to get caught out like that again, Collins stressed.

The City boss is also planning to address any psychological scarring associated with previous trips to Curzon’s Tameside Stadium.

Seven of the current squad – Adam Bartlett, Hamza Bencherif, David Ferguson, Simon Heslop, Sean Newton, Adriano Moke and Jon Parkin – featured in last season’s humiliating 4-1 loss at the Greater Manchester venue.

Heslop, meanwhile, played in the previous season’s 2-1 FA Cup upset at the same ground, but Collins reasoned: “A lot of the players won’t have had that experience before and, hopefully, that can rub off on those that have, so there are no negative mindsets. We’ve got to get on the front from the start and take the game to the opposition like we have done in the last two matches.

“They got a good result on New Year’s Day when they beat Ashton United and have got some decent players. They change system quite a bit and have played 3-5-2 and 4-4-1-1 recently, but Darlington played a different formation to us and, if you play with energy, it doesn’t cause you problems.

“It’s also a nice little stadium with a good pitch, which should suit us with the players we are using and I want to be going to Stockport after our two-week break with a bit of form, so we can look forward to a big game in front of a big crowd.”