Falkirk: Andrew Nelson and Sean Welsh join as Conrad Balatoni leaves

Andrew Nelson playing for Sunderland's youth team against Tottenham Hotspur's Timothy Eyoma
Andrew Nelson (left) played for Sunderland's youth team against Tottenham Hotspur

Falkirk have signed Sunderland's Andrew Nelson on loan, while Sean Welsh has joined the Bairns until the end of the season.

Forward Nelson, 20, will spend six months with Paul Hartley's Championship side after spells on loan at Hartlepool United and Harrogate Town.

Midfielder Welsh, 27, joins under freedom of contract, having left Partick Thistle in May.

Meanwhile, defender Conrad Balatoni has left the Bairns after his deal expired.

Nelson, Welsh and 22-year-old full-back Tommy Robson, who joined the club last month on a contract until the end of the season, went into Falkirk's starting line-up for Tuesday's Scottish Championship defeat by Dunfermline Athletic at East End Park.

Hartley's side are second bottom of the league, 11 points ahead of Brechin City and six points behind Dumbarton.

"I am really pleased to get both Sean and Andrew signed," Hartley told the Falkirk website.

Sean Welsh
Welsh brings experience to the Falkirk midfield

"Sean has spent a few weeks with us now and, in that time, we have been able to see the quality he has.

"He has been captain of a Premiership club and brings with him some valuable experience.

"I first watched Andrew in an under-23s match a few weeks ago and he impressed me that night.

"He's trained with us over the past few days and I think he will be a good fit for the group we have here.

"We have been working towards this for a few weeks now. We have always said that we wanted to get two or three bodies in early to help the group.

"Having Sean, Andrew and Tommy Robson signed up ahead of this afternoon's match is a real boost."

Nelson made four appearances for Hartlepool in the second half of last season before four for Northern League Harrogate in September.

Englishman Balatoni, 26, had joined Falkirk on a short-term deal following spells at Thistle, Kilmarnock and Ayr United.

"We wish Conrad the very best for the future and thank him for his contribution to the club," Falkirk said.

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