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Wolves boss McCarthy hits back at selection criticism for Man Utd defeat

Wolves boss Mick McCarthy hit back at questions over his line-up for last night's 3-0 defeat to Manchester United.

McCarthy was clearly aware of the criticism his decision would unleash because he came to the post-match press conference armed with a piece of evidence that shows players' performances reduce by up to 40 per cent when they are forced to compete twice in three or four days.

And, having asked his players to mark their efforts at Spurs and been presented with a succession of 9.5s, he opted against asking the same players to push themselves again so soon afterwards.

"It was not a plan but when I saw those figures I knew there was no chance of the same type of performance on a Tuesday after a Saturday game," he said.

"I have a squad of 21 to pick from and I regard them all as first-team players."

McCarthy then picked through a succession of matches against high-profile opposition and questioned why his team selections on those occasions had not prompted so much debate.

"If I go into an opposition manager's office, or they come into mine, I don't get any sympathy if my team has just been slapped," he said.

"The pressure was off me on Saturday and I was starting to relax. I thought I would put it back on me again."

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