CAERNARFON Town’s European dream is over after a 3-2 home loss at the hands of Cardiff Met.

The Canaries’ Europa League playoff encounter attracted another bumper crowd to The Oval despite the game being shown on S4C Sgorio, but Sean Eardley’s side were unable to secure a final berth to conclude what has been a phenomenal first season back at JD Welsh Premier League level.

There will be a different look to the Cofis’ dugout next term, with Allan Bickerstaff coming in as first team manager as Eardley moves to assistant to accommodate the requirement for the UEFA Licence.

The home side made a bright start and almost went ahead early on when Darren Thomas forced Will Fuller into a smart stop within the opening minutes, with the Cofis’ talisman involved again soon after when he teed up Leo Smith for an effort that was deflected into the path of the Met stopper.

Thomas was flexing his influence during the opening exchanges and he finally opened the scoring when he met a Nathan Craig free-kick with a looping header that found its way past Fuller.

This sparked wild celebrations from the club’s loyal fan-base, which saw a perimeter wall behind the goal collapse causing a lengthy delay similar to the scenes when Thomas scored against The New Saints in the JD Welsh Cup tie last season.

The stoppage seemed to assist the Ancients, who gradually began to see more of the ball and they levelled matters when a corner fell into the path of Chris Baker, who fired an effort that diverted past Alex Ramsay via a deflection.

After the break saw Thomas go close yet again when he flashed a strike across the goalmouth, with Dylan Rees somehow failing to convert from close range at the other end.

Christian Edwards’ side did not have to wait long for another goal, which came when Adam Roscrow demonstrate his trademark pace to burst past Gareth Edwards and fire home.

Smith, Craig and Gareth Evans all came within inches of equalising following the restart, and they were made to pay on 82 minutes when Kyle McCarthy doubled the visitors advantage with a neat finish into the corner.

A Craig penalty in the final minute gave the Canaries a glimmer of hope, but despite throwing everything at Met in the closing stages it was not enough.