Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 20 September 2014

McCarthy keeps grounded after win

Mick McCarthy (left) and Alex McLeish

Mick McCarthy will not get carried away with Wolves' flying start to their Barclays Premier League campaign after they kept up their unbeaten run with a goalless draw at Aston Villa.

Wolves produced a solid defensive performance to earn a goalless draw and take their points tally to seven from the first three games with skipper Roger Johnson outstanding at the back. It is in sharp contrast to the end of last season when Wolves avoided relegation on the final day of the campaign.

McCarthy said: "My expectation was above just staying above 18th place. I thought we could have had 47 points last season. I was thrilled we stayed up but I don't want it to be that way again. But there are only three games gone, there are 35 still to play so, while we will enjoy the start we've had, I'm hugely wary of what can come."

He added: "You can get on a bad run of form and lose four or five games in this league and wonder how they've all gone by."

Johnson has quickly slotted into his centre-back role at Molineux after making the move from Birmingham this summer.

McCarthy said: "He is one of the best centre-halfs around. I tried to sign him two years ago and we couldn't sign him because we had spent our dough.

"I've probably got a better centre-half now. He's had two years practice in the Premier League."

McCarthy was content with a point after surviving a Villa onslaught early in the second period.

He said: "They were pumped up for 15 minutes in second half and had a really good spell, as much to do with us failing to keep the ball and not passing it to someone in a gold shirt. But we had a good barrier to block them. There were some good blocks and saves.

"Would I take a point at Villa with (Darren) Bent, (Emile) Heskey, (Charles) N'Zogbia and (Gabriel) Agbonlahor? Too right I would."

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