The New Saints manager Scott Ruscoe is confident his side will have more opportunities to regain the top spot in the league.

A late goal for Barry Town United against Saints last Friday denied Ruscoe’s men the chance of moving back to within two points of league leaders Connah’s Quay Nomads.

It means TNS have gone four consecutive league matches without a win, but their manager insists his side has what it takes to turn things around and return to the top, despite being in an uncomfortable position currently.

He said: “The players know the task at hand now, and we are in a position that’s not natural to us and it’s not nice.

“But we’re working harder than usual because of that, and we know there’s only one way to put it right.

“We need to train really hard and make sure we return with a win on Friday at Caernarfon.

“There’s still time for us to take the top spot.

“Connah’s Quay have drawn one and lost one of their last two, and we’ve won one and drawn one of the last two.

“Football is a game so many people love as spectators, and for the neutral fan, this season has been great because no team has run away with it.

“In previous seasons, we’ve been in the position where we could’ve had the league wrapped up by now.

“So we’ve got to do it the hard way, but the staff and players and everyone involved with this football club believe we can still win the league.”

A win for TNS on Friday could see them move to within a point of the top spot, if league leaders Connah’s Quay drop points in their match against Newtown.

Ruscoe is hoping for a reaction from his side against Caernarfon Town on Friday, after their 2-2 draw with Barry Town United last week.

With Barry’s 92nd-minute equaliser meaning a four-point gap remains between Saints and first place, Ruscoe insists his players must pick themselves up and go again in their next match.

He said: “Obviously you hear the score and knowing we could have moved to within two points of them with a win does make the late equaliser even more sickening for us on Friday.

“If we cleared our lines from the corner in the last few minutes of the game, we would get all three points, and deservedly so.

“But we’ve got to pick the players up now, there’s no point moping about after the result.

“It’s very difficult, to take, but we’re still in there, and we’ll look to do the best we can between now and the end of the season.

“We were excellent from start to finish [against Barry]. We pressed the opposition when we didn’t have the ball and passed well when we did.”

Saints face Caernarfon Town away in their next league match on Friday evening (kick-off 7.45pm).

They now have six league fixtures remaining this season, with rivals Nomads currently leading the race for the title.