Harry Arter was in the the thick of it on his Premier League debut for Cardiff City over the weekend. The 28-year-old joined Neil Warnock's men on loan from Bournemouth until the end of the season and has already won over some the supporters with his industriousness, whilst also drawing the chargrin of opposition fans for an extremely robust tackle on Newcastle's Brazilian midfielder Kenedy.
Away from the football pitch, the Ireland international has also been on the defensive after Chris Sutton gave short shrift to his side's chances of staying up this season.
After their opening day defeat to Bournemouth, Sutton was speaking on the Welsh club's chances of beating the drop and could not have been more gloomy in his prediction, even going as far as to say the Bluebirds could record a record low points tally:
Cardiff are not going to score enough goals, they are not good enough to stay in the Premier League
I've got a lot of time for Neil Warnock, he's a fighter, he's got sides up. I think he's got eight promotions in his illustrious managerial career, but Cardiff? You're just not good enough. You'll be outclassed this season as you were yesterday (against Bournemouth).
I think Cardiff will go down, maybe with a record low points tally.
"I think Cardiff will go down, maybe with a record low points tally" ?
— BBC 5 Live Sport (@5liveSport) August 12, 2018
After Cardiff's fortuitous draw with Newcastle at the weekend Arter responded to Sutton's claims on BBC Radio 5 live:
There have been some ridiculous comments from certain people.
You just ignore it because they're silly comments, especially from fellow professionals who have played the game.
They should have a better understanding of football. For whatever reason, they feel like they may need to get a bit more publicity to get better jobs.
Sutton responded to Arter's broadside, appearing on BBC Radio 5 live and doubling down on his belief that Cardiff would indeed fail to stay in the division:
We'll see at the end of the season if I'm wrong.
Cardiff are going to struggle. They were fortunate yesterday.
Fulham spent £100m, Wolves £70m. Why are Cardiff going to stay up? They are not. They are down, I'm sorry.
While Cardiff City may be the bookies favourites to be heading back to the Championship after the season it does seem a bit harsh to speculate as to how low their points total will be come May. For the record, Derby City hold the title for the fewest points gained in a Premier League season with 11, and with Cardiff City drawing on Saturday it means that they are already 1/12th of the way to beating that tally. Godspeed Harry Arter!