Mick cosies up to Molineux faithful

Published Nov. 28, 2010 7:15 a.m. EST

McCarthy claims it was news to him if his job was under threat before the Premier League clash on Saturday. Ahead of the clash at Molineux, reports had quoted McCarthy - whose side are 19th in the table - as describing people who used internet message boards and radio phone-ins as "numpties". After the match, though, the manager stressed that he had not been referring to Wanderers fans, who he was keen to praise for getting behind the team as they bounced back from 2-1 down to triumph in a thrilling encounter. "I haven't seen the newspapers, but somebody rang me and said an article said that I'd had a go at the fans," McCarthy said. "I would never have a go at the fans. "I have had such great support from everybody at the club, so I said I never take any notice of internet bloggers, radio phone-ins, or anything else. I said I think anybody who writes on one or rings in to one are numpties. "What I do like are all those out there (the fans at Molineux), who have been brilliant. "They have stuck with us and they stuck with us today. At 2-1 it would have been so easy to turn on the team, but they didn't and I think they didn't because the players have showed such good application and spirit. "If you come down and see us at the training ground, that is not a team that is dispirited or disheartened at all. So if my future was in any doubt, it was news to me." Although Saturday's result did not change Wolves' lowly position in the table, McCarthy's team cut the gap between themselves and safety to three points and will take confidence from halting their recent four-match losing run in satisfying style. Wanderers went 1-0 up thanks to Kevin Foley's goal five minutes into the second half before efforts from Darren Bent and Danny Welbeck put Sunderland in the driving seat. Stephen Hunt then swiftly drew things level having come off the bench and another substitute, Sylvan Ebanks-Blake, lashed home a dramatic winner with a minute of normal time remaining. When asked about the substitutions, McCarthy joked: "I must be a great manager. If I hadn't made them, then I'd be the numpty!" Wolves thought they had gone ahead in the first period, but Richard Stearman's close-range finish was ruled out for offside - a decision McCarthy, who had been enraged at the time, later accepted was correct. "I've looked at it again and it is offside - he is behind the goalkeeper and I think it's one of those where if you go for it you might get it, but in the end it was a good decision," McCarthy said. "I wasn't saying that to the linesman at the time though. I guess I can afford to be gracious in victory towards the linesman." McCarthy's opposite number Steve Bruce lamented Sunderland's defensive display, branding the concession of three goals against the midlands outfit a "sacrilege". The Black Cats were without injured central defensive duo Michael Turner and Titus Bramble and Bruce feels his side - who have gone unbeaten in this campaign against all of the teams that finished in last season's top 10 - must improve at the back if they are to avoid a similar mid-term slump to that which they suffered in 2009-10. "To be fair, the goals kicked us into life and every time we went forward we looked as if we were going to score for a while there," Bruce said. "But if we defend like that, then it is going to be a tough winter for us again because defensively, individual mistakes have cost us the game. Obviously we were without Turner and Bramble and it showed today. "We haven't been beaten against the top 10 teams which is a fantastic achievement. However, we have got to treat these ones with the same respect. "We have defended rock solidly (in previous games), not just as individuals but as a team. "The back four were busy today and were nowhere near the requirement needed. You can't come here and concede three goals - it's sacrilege, and that's no disrespect to Wolves."