Paul Simpson admits it is “massively concerning” that Carlisle United’s winter transfer dealings have not yet had the desired effect on results.

The Blues had hoped that some significant January recruitment would help turn their season around.

Instead, Carlisle have not taken a single point since their several new faces came into the side, losing seven games on the spin to make League One relegation look inevitable.

Simpson maintains his mid-season signings will improve United for the long term but concedes that his team’s fortunes have got worse in the short term.

Asked if this was a concern, he said: “Massively concerning, yeah, it is.

“Unfortunately, the new players have come into a group where you hope they're going to be able to give it some enthusiasm and freshen it up.

“And I think their performances have been okay – I think Harrison Neal has done really well through January. I thought he stuck at it on Saturday as well [in the 4-0 defeat to Cambridge United].

“I think Josh Vela brings energy and some positivity. Luke Armstrong… I mean, he had one half chance [on Saturday.

News and Star: Luke Armstrong is among several new faces who joined United in JanuaryLuke Armstrong is among several new faces who joined United in January (Image: Barbara Abbott)

“And we've just got to make sure we keep them right. Jack Diamond, unfortunately, is just struggling with his ankle. He keeps getting whacked on every single game. We might have to just see how he is – he might have to just come out of it for a week or two, if he doesn't show any great improvement this week.

“But no, it hasn't had the desired effect. I still do believe, long term, they are going to be good players for the football club.

“But at the moment, we need a short term answer.”

Simpson was asked by the News & Star if, in hindsight, too much emphasis was put on January to solve Carlisle’s problems instead of more of the answers coming from within.

“I really couldn't give you an answer to that one,” he said.

“Yes, we were all very, very hopeful that with the improvement in playing budget, that it was going to give us a real fighting chance.

“But the results haven't reflected it. There's a whole host of issues that are not right.

“And when you lose games like we [did on Saturday], particularly the way it went in that that capitulation after the second goal, there are some big issues and it's a real tough place to be at the moment.”

Simpson is now weighing up his options ahead of this weekend’s trip to Bristol Rovers.

The Blues boss was at Monday’s reserve game against Rangers B to run the role over a host of potential contenders for a first-team spot.

After the Cambridge game, the United manager said plenty of places could be up for grabs as he considered more changes to his XI.