South Africa’s all-time leading goal scorer was named as Eric Tinkler’s successor at Cape Town City at the start of last term, and lead the side to a respectable fifth-place in the league.
Now in his second year, the decorated former striker has already lifted the MTN8 while negotiating through the first round of this year’s Nedbank Cup, all while City remain in the top half of the standings.
Yet McCarthy feels this second year has been more stressful now that the “honeymoon period” is over.
“It’s more stressful this year, as now I’m looking for perfection,” he tells KickOff.com. “Now the honeymoon period and the learning period is over, and now I want to see my philosophy being moulded and my players doing what we learnt last year together. So now I want to see them gelling and getting those combination plays and pattern plays we do in training and that, and I want to see the players executing things perfectly and with control, their first and second touch and movement off the ball.”
Often extremely animated in the dugout, McCarthy feels he’s calmed down a lot since last year, pointing out what has changed in his approach.
“I’m much calmer on the bench,” he says. “Last season I was a nervous wreck because obviously it was my first time, so the passion was there, and I felt like I was part of the boys on the pitch. And if blatant decisions didn’t go our way, I used to get into trouble, but this season I’m much calmer as the team is also starting to play better, and we have a better understanding of each other. There’s a togetherness and we’ve gelled more, so I don’t have to be as erratic as I was last season. So yeah – I haven’t been fined or suspended yet, so I’m much calmer. And I’m staying away from the referees,” he adds with a grin.