Mick McCarthy's Cardiff the mo...


Mick McCarthy's Cardiff the most inform side in the Championship

Phil Egan
Phil Egan

09:51 3 Mar 2021

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Mick McCarthy remains unbeaten as Cardiff City manager and has the club back in the Championship playoff places.

A few eyebrows were raised when the former Republic of Ireland boss was appointed Cardiff manager just two weeks on from his departure at APOEL after less than two months in Cyprus.

Tuesday night's 4-0 win over Derby County moved Cardiff back up to sixth place in the Championship, a point ahead of Bournemouth.

What has McCarthy changed?

When McCarthy came in Cardiff trailed Bournemouth by 13 points and were 15th in the table but since then, the Bluebirds have won eight games and drawn two.

One of the first things McCarthy did was to switch to a back three and one player to profit from that change is Aden Flint, who had been on loan at Sheffield Wednesday earlier in the season.

The players have also talked about how the 62-year-old has simplified things and it seems to be working.

It also helps that McCarthy has some really good players in his squad, plenty with Premier League experience under their belt.

Leandro Bacuna scored twice in the win over Derby and McCarthy singled the former Villa man out for praise.

"Whenever he’s come on, he’s done really well," McCarthy told the Cardiff club website.

"He’s always contributed, and that’s been brilliant. It was lovely to see him get his goals today, and he gave a really good performance.

"He has skill, ability, power and pace. He can wander around and pick the ball up, but he can also run in behind.

"He is really a very good technical footballer, and his goals have shown that today."

McCarthy also has Welsh internationals Kieffer Moore and Harry Wilson in his squad as well as the experience of Sean Morrison, a long-throw specialist similar to McCarthy in his playing days.

The Cardiff boss will have to rotate a bit with the games coming thick and fast, starting with Friday's trip to Huddersfield.

McCarthy added: "It’s a physically difficult time for them all, and they have to recover really quickly.

"We’ll be back in tomorrow recovering, but everybody is happy and things are good, so long may that continue.

"We play again on Friday, and we’re being judged every two or three days now.

"It’s a lovely time when you’re winning football matches, but you’ve got to win the next match.

"Tonight’s match is done, the points are in our pocket, and now we’ve got to win the next one."

Cardiff still have 12 games to play so there's a long way to go but McCarthy has the fans believing again as he aims to secure promotion from the Championship for a third time, having done it with Sunderland in 2005 and Wolves four years later.

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Cardiff City Championship Harry Wilson Kieffer Moore Leandro Bacuna Mick McCarthy

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