CHIPPENHAM Town boss Mark Collier believes the capture of former Wales U21 international Curtis McDonald could prove a significant addition as he assesses the Bluebirds' readiness for the second half of the National League South campaign.

Collier was this week awaiting international clearance on the arrival of left-sided defender McDonald and former Cardiff City midfielder Robbie Patten as he prepared to strengthen his options further following the arrival of another ex-Cardiff man, forward Abdi Noor, who sat on the bench for Saturday's 2-1 home win over Whitehawk having joined the Hardenhuish Park club at the end of last week.

Saturday's trip to Havant & Waterlooville will mark the midway point in Town's first season in the division since their glorious Southern League Premier Division title triumph in April and Collier believes his new arrivals are just another step in the evolution of the club as they adjust to life at the higher level.

"It's important we get competition for places,'' said Collier, who also revealed that defender Nuno Felix had been released by the club by mutual agreement over the weekend.

"People have had great opportunities from the start of the season up until now but we need to make some tough decisions and we're slowly making them.

"I was talking to the players saying we're at that level now where we just can't pick the same 15 or 16 players every week, we have to make sure we're equipped for all eventualities and hopefully we can keep adding to the squad if we can improve it.

"If we can make additions to the squad that we think will improve it, I'm all for that.''

McDonald, 29, made one appearance for Cardiff City back in the 2006-07 campaign but is an established performer in non-league circles with spells at Forest Green Rovers, Newport County and Brackley under his belt before a recent spell at financially-troubled Southern League Premier side Merthyr Town.

"He will be a very big signing for us,'' added Collier, of the player, also capped at U17 and U19 level for his country.

"Merthyr have had some financial problems and cut some playing budgets so I've jumped in on the back of that. We had spoken to Curtis, who was the key signing for us and young Patten (who turned 21 last week) had joined him as well.

"They will both be big additions to the squad.

"We're having to wait for international clearance for those two before they can get involved so we're just in the queue with everybody else waiting for that to happen.''

Chippenham will be without McDonald for Saturday's trip to Havant in any case, as the player attends a family wedding.

Former Cardiff U23 and Wales U17 and U19 player Noor, 21, meanwhile had his international clearance ratified last week having trained in Wiltshire for the preceding three weeks.