RICHIE Wellens has prioritised reducing his squad size by five players during the upcoming January transfer window, and also wants to get to the bottom of Keshi Anderson’s injury concern that again curtailed his impact during Saturday’s home win over Walsall.

In April, Town boss Wellens outlined his plan to cut the size of his squad from 33 players to just 20 – allowing more quality but to the detriment of quantity in his team.

That plan failed to come to fruition, with 33 players still under contract at SN1 following a summer of major change that saw 14 new players sign in addition to four academy graduates earning their first professional contracts.

Wellens’ squad size has perhaps come as a blessing in disguise, with multiple key players – including Dion Conroy, Mathieu Baudry, Lloyd Isgrove, Jordan Lyden and Anderson – all picking notable injuries since the start of the season.

But after club chairman Lee Power revealed to BBC Wiltshire that the club has overspent with regards to its initial budget for the season, Wellens now looks set to chop several names from his squad in the coming months.

He said: “I’m going to have to try and cut numbers, but we keep picking up little injuries.

“I’ll try and increase the squad’s quality, but I do need to get rid of four or five players – either on loan or permanently in January.”

Wellens also plans to get to the bottom of Anderson’s mysterious hamstring issue, which forced him off the pitch with 24 minutes played during Saturday’s 2-1 win over Walsall – a win that lifted Town into League Two’s automatic promotion frame.

Anderson’s outstretched right leg when attempting to collect Dion Donohue’s punt forward ended disastrously, with the 24-year-old helped off by two of Swindon’s medical staff amid his distress.

Noted as a key player, Wellens evidently wants Anderson to be a regular starter for Town.

But his impact on the squad is being halted by his hamstring, which has ultimately prevented him playing a full 90 minutes since Macclesfield Town’s visit to SN1 in mid-September.

“It’s not easy (cutting the squad) when you’ve had the injury list we’ve suffered from. It’s becoming a weekly occurrence – especially Keshi,” said Wellens.

“Every time we scan his hamstring, he’s fine. But it’s easy to see from his reaction when he took the ball down that he felt his hamstring.

“It’s got to a stage now where we need to get to the bottom of it. Keshi is a big player for us, and we can’t keep it like this.

“It affects our performance. We kicked off and went a goal up, we were comfortable in the game.

“But after 20 minutes (when Anderson was substituted), it disrupted our rhythm.”