BARROW AFC have completed a treble transfer swoop ahead of tonight’s National League trip to Macclesfield Town.

The Bluebirds have signed Blackburn Rovers duo Matty Platt and Connor Thomson, as well as Wigan Athletic youngster Luke Burke on loan until the end of the season.

Platt, 19, is predominantly a centre-back, who has captained the Blackburn Under-23s side, the same team for whom former Carlisle United man Thomson – who turned 21 yesterday – has impressed on the wing. The latter featured against Barrow in the Lancashire Senior Cup last season.

Both can also play at full-back, if needed, with Burke operating in that defensive position as his first preference – having played for Wigan five times in the Championship this season.

The trio are all available for the trip to Moss Rose tonight, for which both Nick Anderton and Shaun Beeley are suspended – the latter having failed in his appeal against a three-match ban for his red card at Aldershot.

AFC manager Paul Cox is looking forward to seeing them in action, and said of the Blackburn duo: “They’re players we’ve watched and kept an eye on. We’ve had to be a little bit patient and wait for the window to close, because there was talk of them going out to Football League clubs.

“Thomson is a North-West boy, he was at Carlisle as a kid. He can play at full-back, but he is a 6ft 3ins winger and he is lightning. He’s someone who excites me.

“You watch clips of him and you realise how good this kid is. They’ve just given him a new contract – he’s 6ft 3ins, but he can catch pigeons. He’s direct as a winger and he can play at left or right-back as well. I was amazed.

“His strongest position is winger, but he is quite adept at full-back.

“Platt is the captain of the under-23s, and they are two good additions. With us only having Danny and Moussa as centre-backs, Platty comes in and we’ve got more competition there.

The deals for Platt and Thomson have been in the pipeline for the past week, with Barrow concluding the arrangement for Burke with the Latics as well.

The 18-year-old right-back will be a much-needed fillip in the absence of Beeley for the next three matches, and Cox said: “He’s one we looked at a while back, but he wasn’t available. We had to wait for the transfer window to close to try to get him in.

“It was a case where both our full-backs have been very good this season, but Beels’ appeal has been unsuccessful and we’ve got to have someone to come in, take the mantle and create that competition for places. He’s not just coming in to make up the numbers – he has played five times in the Championship already this season, so it just shows his quality.”

Beeley will be absent tonight after the appeal against his three-match ban for being sent-off at Aldershot was rejected.

The full-back was dismissed in the 87th minute of the 2-2 draw at the Recreation Ground following an incident involving Shots player Callum Reynolds.

He will sit out Wednesday’s National League match at Macclesfield, as well as Saturday’s encounter with Torquay and the FA Trophy quarter-final with Tranmere Rovers.