Three defeats in four, if you include the cup, doesn’t sound like a good start to the season.
But it was always going to be hard to pick up points early on when two of the toughest-looking away trips of the season appear within the first three league games.
Not many sides will go to Queen’s Park Rangers’ Loftus Road and be on level terms heading into the last minute.
It was cruel luck as the Paul Jewell curse of last-minute winners returned to haunt us, though in truth they deserved it after twice rattling our crossbar in a dominant second half.
But the performance, like at Reading, showed we can match two sides expected to be competing for the automatic promotion spots this season and gives me heart this won’t be another season of toil at the wrong end of the table.
What still worries me though is where the goals are going to come from.
Are Luke Hyam, who I was pleased to see sign a new contract this week, and Cole Skuse too similar in a straight 4-4-2? I think so.
Both are adept at winning possession and playing a simple ball, but neither are players who look capable of drawing a defender out with a run or contributing a healthy return of goals — and the strikers need service to feed off.
McCarthy may feel his business in the transfer market is done, but if I were him I’d be looking to bring in a creative midfielder, a player who can unlock a door, to compete with Anthony Wordsworth.
Leeds United at home on Saturday will be more of a yardstick of where we are than Reading and QPR away, but lose that and a few doubts will start to grow.