PETER GRANT is targeting quality over quantity to shape his Athletic squad and is hoping to announce new arrivals in the coming days.

The Dunfermline boss has so far brought in Nikolay Todorov, Deniz Mehmet and Dan Pybus, along with the loan of Dundee United centre back Ross Graham, and wants a pool of 20 outfield players to pick from.

The Pars began their Premier Sports Cup, Group H campaign with a 4-2 win at Partick Thistle, on Saturday and a 1-0 defeat at Premiership St Mirren on Tuesday, and only named five substitutes – including a goalkeeper – on both occasions.

Grant has been linked with a move for Rangers winger Kai Kennedy, who had loan spells with Inverness Caledonian Thistle and Raith Rovers last season, and he said that is a market the club are exploring.

Speaking to Press Sport following the defeat in Paisley, he explained: “I’m a great believer in having a small squad but a quality squad.

“If I can do that, and get 20 players in, I’ll be delighted. If I’ve 20 outfield players that’s more than capable of playing in the first team, I’ll be delighted at that.

“I like that camaraderie between the group, and that they’ve got to fight for each other. As I’ve said to you many times, the most competitive place for us should be on the training pitch, more than anything else.

“That’s the quality you want, the players training against quality every day, and that’s what we’re trying to do.

“It might take a bit of time to get that in because some clubs are just back, and maybe that quality that you’re looking at, whether it’s a loan or whatever, have just come back in to start training and the clubs don’t want to let them out just now.

“There’s certain situations like that and there’s other ones we’re hoping will happen over the next couple of days.”

Although disappointed with the nature of the goal his side conceded to Curtis Main in their defeat to Saints, Grant has been pleased with the attitude of his players so far, and is confident the Pars fans will see plenty of commitment and entertainment.

Up to 1,000 fans will be there to see the team against Dumbarton this weekend, and the manager continued: “It’s very positive. I thought the way we played, until we conceded the goal, we did exceptionally well.

“The disappointment is the way we lost the goal; we never moved out the box and cleared the box well enough, and we spoke about that at the weekend that you have to clear your box when the ball goes back. We didn’t do it, and it cost us dearly.

“That was disappointing but the pleasing thing was that you see, right up to 94 minutes, we’re still trying to win the game, still trying to get something from the game, trying to get a draw from the game, whatever, and boys were running on empty because we’ve had to use a lot of them for a lot of games.

“They’ve been training a lot to try and get their fitness, and there’s a small group of them, so there’s a lot of miles and energy been covered.

“I think the fans will love the commitment of the players. I think they’re committed to try and do everything; they’re disappointed at the end of the game because we’ve not got something from it, and that’s what we want to see.

“Fans are getting back in on Saturday, thank God, and we want to be able to entertain them, win games of football and give them the commitment that the players had tonight.”

Grant added that Ryan Dow, Iain Wilson and Lewis Martin were making progress with injury but Lewis McCann is to see a specialist over a groin issue that, if it needs an operation, could sideline him for four or five weeks.