McCarthy - Plaudits mean nothing without points
Wolves manager Mick McCarthy admits he is taking no solace from the praise his team have won for their recent performances.
McCarthy's men take on Arsenal at Molineux tomorrow, completing a nightmare five-game run that will have seen them play all the current top four in the Barclays Premier League, including Manchester United twice because of their Carling Cup meeting.
Wolves have played well in that period, but so far have only one win, against Manchester City, to show for their endeavours. They were denied a draw at Old Trafford on Saturday as Park Ji-sung's injury-time winner earned Manchester United a 2-1 win.
"My team's performances against Chelsea (when they lost 2-0 at Stamford Bridge) and against Manchester United at Old Trafford were terrific, but we got nothing for them," McCarthy said.
"So while you get lauded for your football, you've got to win.
"That's at any level, whether it's winning and staying the Premier League, which is seen as a success for us, or the top teams winning trophies.
"We'll all be judged on that."
McCarthy admits his team have fared better than many expected over the last three weeks, but added he sets higher standards than just competing.
He said: "Bearing in mind we were tipped to get nothing from the four (league) games, we've had three points, but we'd like something else.
"We're not content with the three points, and you could see that on Saturday (against Manchester United).
"We deserved something out of the game, and you can see what it meant to all of us that we didn't get it."
For a man whose team has won just one league game since the opening day of the season, McCarthy cut a relaxed figure at the team's training ground today.
The former Republic of Ireland boss' confidence comes from a belief his current team is better than the Wolves side that avoided the drop last year with two games to spare.
He said: "I think we are better, playing better football and having better performances than we did at this stage last season.
"We're on similar points, and my belief as always is that the games are there and we'll pick up the points if we keep playing like this.
"There's a real belief that we are a better side."
Arsenal go into the game on the back of two straight defeats, and McCarthy is wary of a reaction tomorrow.
"I would think they'll be smarting," he said.