Mick McCarthy has claimed that he feels sorry for his former club Sunderland following their struggles over the last few years.
The 61-year-old coach spent three years at the North East club and helped them win the Championship and secure promotion to the Premier League in 2005.
McCarthy’s side struggled in the top flight and he was sacked in March 2006 with the Black Cats 16 points adrift of safety at the bottom of the table.
The Irishman has had long stints at Wolves, Ipswich Town and Ireland since but it appears he is still fond of Sunderland.
Speaking to The Athletic, the 61-year-old reflected on his time at the Stadium of Light and revealed his thoughts about the club’s current struggles.
He said: “I’ve just watched Sunderland ’Til I Die and I feel so sad for them.
“I loved my time there. It was brilliant. I’ve loved every club I’ve been at and I’ve had success at them all.”
The Black Cats have enjoyed some success since McCarthy’s exit but have been played with struggles in the last few years.
They suffered back-to-back relegations between 2016 and 2018, dropping from the Premier League to League One.
Under Jack Ross, they came heartbreakingly close to securing a return to the Championship after just one term in the third tier, however, a 95th-minute winner in the play-off final ensured it was Charlton Athletic, not Sunderland, that went up last season.
With Phil Parkinson now at the helm, the North East outfit are seventh in League One with 10 games remaining of the current campaign.
Are these 18 Sunderland facts true or false? Have a go now!
Sunderland fans will no doubt love to hear this honest claim from McCarthy and that he still thinks of his time at the club very fondly, despite the way it ended.
You’d imagine the feeling is mutual given the success they had in the 2004/05 campaign with him at the helm.
That was a long time ago, however, and you really have to feel for the Stadium of Light faithful given what has happened over the last few years.