CAERNARFON Town talisman Darren Thomas is finally proving that he belongs at JD Welsh Premier League level.

The popular playmaker, who has been dubbed the “Cofi Messi” by the club’s passionate fan base, has come on leaps and bounds since the turn of the year and turned in yet another mesmerising display in their 3-1 defeat at champions The New Saints in front of the S4C Sgorio cameras on Saturday.

This surge in form is a real vindication for both Thomas and the Canaries, who have stuck by him through a difficult start to life in the top fight that had some questioning whether or not his impressive skill-set would make a transition to WPL level after a period of underachievement at Aberystwyth Town.

There is no questioning Thomas was the standout performer of their Huws Gray Alliance title victory, and he deserves an enormous amount of credit for believing in his own ability and working exceptionally hard to ensure his performances in the field improved considerably.

The faith shown in him by manager Sean Eardley and the rest of the Cofis’ coaching staff must have also been a great relief for him, and Thomas has rewarded them with a tireless commitment and quality in the final third that has gone a long way to securing an expected fourth placed finish for the club during their first season in the top flight.

When Thomas is in the mood there are few better in the domestic game, with his nous in tricky situations and his ability to make the right decisions on a consistent basis setting him apart from most playing in the same position.

He is an inspirational figure within the squad and is relied on heavily both on and off the pitch, which is a responsibility he takes extremely seriously at his hometown club.

Anyone that questioned whether Thomas was made for the top of the Welsh football pyramid must now concede this is not the case, and there is no telling the heights he could reach with a good pre-season under his belt and the possible experience of Europa League action should the Canaries secure a memorable playoff victory.

That, of course, is still to be decided, but given how much stronger Thomas has got as the season has gone on, they could reach the promised land on his back to round off what has been an exceptional few months.

Nobody would take more pride in this than Thomas, who has silenced the doubters and, at last, made his presence felt amongst the Welsh football elite.