NEWPORT County AFC talisman Mickey Demetriou believes fresh blood in the January transfer window can give an extra push to a squad that is already blessed with quality.

Exiles manager James Rowberry is closing in on a pair of signings ahead of Saturday’s League Two meeting with Harrogate at Rodney Parade.

The boss has targeted at least a trio of new recruits and has made room in his squad with the departures of midfielders Ed Upson and Christopher Missilou plus forwards Jordan Greenidge and Jermain Hylton.

Seventh-placed County hope to enjoy another promotion challenge and Demetriou hopes Rowberry can get his targets.

South Wales Argus: County stalwart Mickey DemetriouCounty stalwart Mickey Demetriou

“We have got a very good squad. The gaffer has said that he wants to bring three in and he will only bring in players that are going to improve our team,” said the defender, who was signed in the 2017 January window.

“If he is able to do that, happy days. We have always been a welcoming group, ask anyone that comes into this team, so we will welcome them with open arms and we want them to improve us.”

Demetriou is one of six central defenders, battling for spots with James Clarke, Matty Dolan, Priestley Farquarson, versatile Scot Bennett and up-and-coming Joe Woodiwiss.

However, he would welcome fresh blood at the back should Rowberry look to add a different option.

“If they are in my position then it will make me perform better, which I need to do because we are conceding goals and as a defender your main job is to stop that,” said the club vice-captain.

“If he brings in a centre-half then I’ve got to up my game, but I am going to do that anyway. I am not one of those players who thinks they are comfortable [in the side].”

South Wales Argus: Mickey Demetriou congratulates Ollie Cooper (far left)Mickey Demetriou congratulates Ollie Cooper (far left)

Demetriou also hopes that County’s exciting loan players – Aston Villa’s Finn Azaz, Liverpool’s Jake Cain, Swansea’s Ollie Cooper and Fulham’s Timmy Abraham – stay for the whole campaign.

A year ago the exits of Scott Twine and Brandon Cooper hit the Exiles hard but the stalwart wants the parent clubs to see the value in the prospects learning lessons in League Two.

“It’s a first loan spell for Coops and Jake,” said Demetriou. “They have come in and changed our team completely and we are lucky to have them. Look at Coops, who has played more than Jake, and he shouldn’t be in this league really.

“Hopefully Swansea don’t call him back after what happened to us last year because they are young lads that need to play football.

“We are lucky enough to have them and hopefully they can stay for the rest of the season.”