MUSSELBURGH Athletic boss Kevin McDonald has urged his side to avoid a slow start when the new football season gets under way.

It is unknown when training and competitive matches will see the new campaign begin but the Olivebank side have already been busy in the transfer market.

McDonald has been tweaking his squad, who finished last season strongly.

Already, he has brought Brad Donaldson back to the club from Tranent Juniors, while Dean Ballantyne has also moved west along the A1 from Dunbar United.

McDonald said: “Obviously, I am trying to get the squad finished and finalised so that when we come back we are ready to go.

“I’ve kept the whole squad barring two or three and we need to add a couple of little bits.

“I’m not as busy as last season but constantly looking.

“We have got a lot of players in different positions.

“Last season, we got stung with being short defensively and that was the reason we got off to a bad start.”

Donaldson began his career at Hibs and can count Livingston, Edinburgh City and Cowdenbeath among his former clubs.

The 25-year-old is also no stranger to the Olivebank faithful having enjoyed a spell at the club in 2017.

McDonald said: “I was assistant manager when he was first here. He is a big character and has great attributes.

“He has played at a decent level his whole career and defensively is somewhere we needed to strengthen.

“He is a perfect signing and I am delighted that he has decided to come back.”

At the other end of the pitch, Ballantyne will be hoping to bring his New Countess Park form back to his hometown.

A total of 126 goals in 193 appearances for Dunbar will see Ballantyne add to the club’s already formidable strikeforce, including Matti King and Darren Downie.

The Musselburgh boss said: “Dean has always scored goals and when you see the results his name always pops up as a goalscorer.

“His all-around play is something I like and is something different to what we have in Nathan [Evans], Matti and Darren.

“Matti and Darren like to come to the ball and Dean can run in behind and look after the ball.

“It is four right good options.”

The manager remains keen to strengthen his options in the wide positions and was looking to make the right additions to the squad as quickly as possible.

A slow start left Musselburgh looking up the East of Scotland Football League Premier Division but just one defeat since the middle of November highlights how things were heading in the correct direction.

The former Hibs midfielder also has Musselburgh’s maiden Scottish Cup adventure to look forward to and said: “Getting off to a good start is massive and leads into so many different things.

“You get points on the board, there is early confidence and obviously I am going to have a competitive squad of players fighting for places.

“To be successful, you cannot have just 11 or 12 players.

“It needs to be different players who suit different games.”