Mick McCarthy has said he was “gobsmacked” that no-one had ever told him about the size and impressive infrastructure of Cardiff City before he took the job.
McCarthy is loving life in the Bluebirds hotseat, fresh off the back of his fourth win in a row, following the 2-0 win over Luton Town on Tuesday night, and unbeaten in his first six matches in charge of the Welsh club.
It has been something of a whirlwind since he took over, with results causing an immediate upswing in mood among the Cardiff City fan base.
The Bluebirds league position is now a lot healthier, too, as they sit pretty in seventh place with the play-off spots right in their crosshairs.
But while results on the pitch have been tremendous, McCarthy, buoyed by taking another three points from Kenilworth Road, has revealed that what happens behind the scenes has impressed him beyond belief.
McCarthy said he was shocked that no-one had ever mentioned to him just how good the City set-up was, but he suddenly remembered that his old friend and Cardiff legend Neil Warnock told him, just after he left the club, that it is the sort of place that would suit him down to the ground.
“I’ve found it wonderful,” McCarthy said of his tenure so far. “I am gobsmacked that no-one has ever said to me… I’d say Neil Warnock, I remember when he was leaving and he thought it might be a job for me, he said ‘it’s a great club, you’d love it here’.
“That’s Neil Warnock, because we’re mates. So he said it to me.
“That [getting the job after Warnock left] never happened.
“But all the players are really professional, all the staff here are terrific. I learn things from them.
“Some of the different ways the analysts do things, the medical staff, the administration behind it, it’s been great. Really top drawer.
“Then they’ve got the stadium behind it that is excellent. The training ground, I know it’s not ours it is the FAW’s, but it’s amazing.
“I’ve loved it, I really have.”
Cardiff fans have certainly enjoyed the ride, too, with their team now looking serious candidates for the top six.
Bournemouth, who currently occupy that last play-off spot, play Rotherham on Wednesday night and Cardiff’s result at Luton will just ramp up the heat ever so slightly.
However, McCarthy, who had his feet firmly screwed to the ground, is not entertaining any talk of a play-off push just yet.
“I didn’t get this face and hairline because I’m only 21 by the way, I’ve been doing it a long time,” he laughed.
“You’re probably right, I won’t [talk about play-offs].
“Before, we’ve gone four on the bounce and lost four on the bounce, so I don’t want that to happen.
“If we keep playing the way we are and keep putting the performances in then it shouldn’t.
“But I know this league and it can turn around very quickly.
“I won’t get carried away and the players certainly won’t.
“I heard the TV saying ‘keep their feet on the ground’. Well, if anybody knows me they will know I won’t be getting my feet off the ground.
“Not unless they are getting a kick up the backside off me, then they will get their feet off the ground!”