By David Williams
Scott Ruscoe admits he will have a job on his hands to lift his players’ spirits for their return to domestic action after The New Saints’ European dream died in the Faroe Islands on Wednesday night.
After going ahead in the penalty shoot-out against Faroese side B36 Torshavn, the former Welsh champions lost 5-4, having been held to a 2-2 draw after extra-time in their Europa League second qualifying round tie.
“Penalties are always a bit of a lottery, so it does feel a cruel way to go out,” said Saints manager Ruscoe.
“I felt the balance of play was in our favour in the second-half of extra-time. They looked tired. They looked shot, but they managed to force a late equaliser and that was hard to take.
“It’s a lonely walk when you take those penalties and sometimes it doesn’t work out for you if you’re not quite in the right frame of mind.
Devastated about the result last night , no worse way to lose than a penalty shootout🤷♂️Lads workrate was top class for 120 minutes. We go again now in the league and get that title back🙌 buzzing to make europa league debut⚽️ @tnsfc
— Ben clark (@BClarky1410) September 17, 2020
“We have now got a game against Cardiff Met this weekend and it will be difficult to lift the players at this stage because it’s hard to find the right words after a painful loss like that.”
They Cymru Premier side went behind in the 47th minute through Michal Przbylski’s opener. They soon levelled with Irishman Dean Ebbe setting up Leo Smith to score in the 81st minute.
Ebbe then scored what looked like an extra-time winner in the 112th minute, but the Saints were pulled back in the 120th minute by Stefan Radoslevic.
The New Saints – who began their league campaign last week with a 3-0 victory at Barry – now host Cardiff Met on Saturday afternoon.