Mick McCarthy has always had a way with words.
His management style and brand of football might divide fans but few can deny his ability to entertain and amuse when it comes to dealing with the press.
In an age when footballers give increasingly bland answers to pre and post-match questions, McCarthy’s quick wit and occasional bluntness are a breath of fresh air.
There have been countless memorable moments down the years – here are just 17 of them.
“It was a very enjoyable, terrific performance full of energy and good football and creating chances. Of course, the one cruel bit is in the 92nd minute when we conceded.”
16. The finished article:
“Inter have bought the finished article and there’s no doubt he can keep improving.”
15. A way with words:
“We’re football people, not poets, but obviously I’m disappointed with the result.”
14. Handling Pressure:
“It wasn’t a monkey on my back, it was Planet of the Apes.”
13. A Sh**e Christmas:
“I had a nice time over Christmas. I watched Eastenders – blimey, that makes my job look easy!”
12. Working his magic:
“At the moment we’ve got 16 first team players. My initials stand for Mick McCarthy, not Merlin the Magician.”
11. Dealing with frustrated fans:
“Some people might be frustrated with that result? Some people can f*** off.”
10. Giving up on booze:
“I started [trying to give up alcohol] on Shrove Tuesday and then by Ash Wednesday something had happened, and I’d had a bottle of beer.”
9. Reacting to the pundits:
“Opinions are like backsides, we’ve all got them but it’s not wise to air them in public.”
8. Jack Charlton’s important lesson:
“Ensure that you’re all inside the tent pissing out and get rid of any fellow who’s outside the tent pissing in.”
7. The fickleness of football fans:
“I thought I had seen it all when it comes to the fickleness of football folk. Then I heard Spurs fans singing ‘There’s only one Alan Sugar’.”
6. Drug testing his players:
“We’ve got the drug testers here today. They shouldn’t be going to see the players. They should go to see the officials instead.”
5. Mixing up his metaphors:
“I was feeling as sick as the proverbial donkey.”
4. Using fancy words:
“Anyone who uses the word ‘quintessentially’ in a half time talk is talking crap.”
3. Where it all went wrong:
“I haven’t got enough time to tell you – Match of the Day only lasts an hour and 20 minutes, doesn’t it?”
2. The favourites tag:
“I’d rather be favourites for Premiership relegation than favourites to win the play-offs.”
1. No regrets:
“No regrets, none at all. My only regret is that we went out on penalties. That’s my only regret. But no, no regrets.”
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Loaded staff writer Jack Beresford has produced content for Lad Bible, Axonn Media and a variety of online sports and news media outlets.