The New Saints boss Scott Ruscoe believes the Welsh Premier League is starting to see the real deal with his side after they opened up a four-point gap at the top of the table.

An Aeron Edwards goal four minutes in gave Saints the lead, but they were soon pegged back when Kane McLaggon scored in the eighth minute, only for a Ryan Brobbel penalty four minutes after that re-established TNS’ lead.

Two late goals from Dean Ebbe and Jamie Mullan gave Saints an emphatic scoreline, and after the champions have recorded some highly impressive results in recent weeks, Ruscoe feels this is TNS’ true identity.

“There is a real togetherness about the squad – I think that’s fair,” he said ahead of Friday’s clash with Cardiff Met at Park Hall.

“If you look back where we had the spell of injuries and team selection was forced upon us, we probably couldn’t get our main XI out there.

“But we’re just coming into what you can see now is a good team bond, training has been accelerated because the speed of everything we do is quicker.

“When you’ve got that dynamic in the group, it does help in the performances and that’s been shown.”

Ruscoe believes that his squad’s dominance in overhauling Barry Town United’s lead at the top of the table can be traced back to their recent form.

Since defeat at Caernarfon on October 4, Saints have won eight of their last nine with just a draw at Connah’s Quay Nomads, plus putting 12 past Airbus and nine past Mold in the Welsh Cup.

“The last sets of results are a great barometer for where we are,” said the Saints boss.

“If you look at our last six or seven games, we’ve scored lots of goals as well, the Carmarthen game aside.

“We stuttered a little bit there but that shows as a good team, that we weren’t at our top level but we still got the win.

“It’s very important that we did get that win. The only one that I have felt disappointed with is going all the way back to the Nomads game.

“We drew there but if we had won that one, then we really would have stamped our authority on the league and shown that we would have gone away to Connah’s Quay, played excellently and got a result.

“But we still got the draw; I felt disappointment at the time but the other results have taken care of themselves because the performances took care of that.

“Now we have a squad where we have players who we’re bringing off the bench, eg the other night where we brought on Greg Draper, Jamie Mullan and Kurtis Byrne – anyone else would love them in their starting line-up.

“We have that strong squad and we’re all fighting for the same thing.

“We’ve got the three games over before and during Christmas but then we have a little break before we play Newtown.

“If the lads do get the results we want, then they can have those days off in the New Year with their families.”