NEWTOWN'S mentality in 2024/25 needs to lift if they are to break the Cymru Premier League top three, according to boss Scott Ruscoe.

The Robins' season came to a crashing end when they were thrashed 5-0 by Penybont, putting an end to European hopes.

With Ruscoe set for a first full pre-season, he admitted the performance that he was left querying whether some players will have what it takes to take Newtown further.

He said: "I think it is learned behaviour it's one where you can raise your game by 10 or 20 per cent with the right characters in the team.

"That's up to me now to make sure we're getting the right characters in the team with energy, drive and passion all words that made me as a player.


"It's about the right blend of youth and experience and letting players go that we don't have a budget for or aren't in my plans and then get a good pre-season under our belts.

"Then we can see what we've got to offer."

The Reds' boss admitted his side faced an uphill battle after conceding twice with 18 minutes but insisted his side were more than fitting of their favourites tag before the game.

"I was disappointed for the spectacle it was a game that was there for us," he said.

"We had a 1,000 fans, the player shad had a really good five-work period building up it where we were solid and I felt we had a perfect opportunity to reach the final.

"We know that football is unpredictable and I felt a few of the players froze because of the occasions.

"They weren't in fear of Penybont conceding the two early goals didn't help us in that early time frame.

"The more we tried to get it back, the more it slipped away and that tells me a lot about some of the players' characters as well.

County Times:

"Earlier on this season we had defeat against Bala where I don't think the players went to 90 minutes which is difficult because if you have 11 players who give up the ghost, managers will question their attitudes.

"I thought it was a one-off against Bala but when it happens again, do you think there's a weakness in the squad? That's something only the players can answer.

"You never like to say that I feel for the players too because they've shown so much energy and passion in recent weeks.

"We should have drawn with TNS, we drew at Bala and Connah's Quay, beat Cardiff Met and Caernarfon and finished the season in fourth which is where Newtown should be.

"But that one-off game to go into Europe leaves a bitter taste in my mouth."