Nisbet is the latest Shire loan starlet

Luke Donnelly is one of the successful Shire loan signings
Luke Donnelly is one of the successful Shire loan signings

Craig Tully will continue to use the SPFL’s loan system to try and make his East Stirlingshire team the best it can be.

Latest loanee Kevin Nisbet made a huge impact on his debut, a day after agreeing a month long stay from Partick Thistle, grabbing two goals in Saturday’s 3-1 win over Queen’s Park.

But Tully says the teenager isn’t the only success from his dabbling in the loan market. Celtic midfielder Luke Donnelly has also been a hit and Raith Rovers kid David Bates is currently keeping experienced and popular centre-half Michael Bolochoweckyj out of the team.

“The loan system does allow us to bring in good quality youngsters from the big clubs and the ones we have here right now have certainly added something,” said the Shire boss.

“You have to look around and you have to know where to look but you can increase the quality of what you have by using loan deals.”

Tully says he would be keen on trying to forge relationships with Premiership and Championship clubs to keep the flow of players coming next season and beyond.

“What you need is a good young player who wants the chance to come and play first team football and who is willing to learn from the experience,” he said. “We have been fortunate in the young kids who have been on loan have accepted the challenge, fitted into our dressing room and adapted to the style of play in our league quickly.

“But you also need to treat them right, make sure they are welcomed and looked after properly.

“That’s something our club does naturally so we don’t have to worry on that score. But if word gets back to the player’s own club that they are being treated well it makes it easier to see whether we can continue a relationship where we might get more good young players in the future,” he said.

The Shire boss says if Nisbet continues his explosive start to his Shire loan they could look at extending the deal by another two months but that will depend on finance.

Bates and Donnelly will stay at Shire until the end of the season. The centre-half now looks a firm fixture in the team and his assured performances mean there are other, more established players, unable to force their way in.

Celtic kid Donnelly has had a hard time with injuries lately which has limited his appearances which has been a blow to Shire.

“We have really missed Luke,” said Tully. “He has only played in a couple of games.”