When Birmingham City were being subjected to a brutal defeat at Manchester City six days ago, accusations were levelled about just how much it hurt the current incumbents of the first team shirt.
However, one person who shared the pain as acutely as Birmingham's supporters was Marcos Painter.
The 19-year-old was making only his second Premier-ship appearance in a Blues shirt and, following the accolades he received in the victory over Fulham, he learned about the harsh realities of Premiership life.
Nevertheless, Painter could be exempted from criticism after the Eastlands debacle as he clearly strained every last sinew in order to try and rescue a lost cause.
And there is no danger of Painter losing the common touch, despite rubbing shoulders with millionaires during his Premiership initiation.
Dealing with Collins John, Trevor Sinclair and Cristiano Ronaldo is a test of character for even the most seasoned of full-backs, but Painter has acquitted himself with aplomb.
In fact, his emergence may even curtail Blues manager Steve Bruce's season-long search for a left-back and allow him to channel his resources elsewhere.
Painter certainly possesses the necessary confidence to be a Premiership footballer, but there is no bombast to his character.
In fact, the embryonic stages of our conversation were interrupted because Painter was manoeuvring his car through an Asda car wash. In this cash-rich era of millionaire footballers, it is a break from the norm to imagine someone driving through a £3.99 spray and wax.
And therein lies the appeal of players like Painter; not only do they possess talent, but supporters can relate to them.
"The defeat at Manchester City hurt me as much as the supporters," said Painter.
"When they took the lead after 40 seconds, it was the worst feeling I had ever experienced. "
"It got worse and, as more goals went in, I looked at our fans and felt for them.
"I have been there myself as I always used to watch the games with the supporters. I felt terrible when we lost 2-0 at West Bromwich Albion last season, so they must have felt twice as bad during the game against Manchester City.
"I was sulking all the way home. A lot of my family had gone to watch and sat behind the goal with the Blues fans and it was a horrible feeling at the end of the game."
Contrast that with the emotions Painter felt seven days previously when he was an integral part of Birmingham's first home win of the campaign.
A 1-0 victory against Fulham will be indelibly inked in Painter's memory as the day he finally made his league bow in a Blues shirt.
He received rave reviews for his accomplished performance and his uncanny resemblance to John Terry in both running style and physique was soon spotted by the national media.
Yet Painter, who made his full debut at Scunthorpe in the Carling Cup in September, admitted his call to arms came out of the blue.
"There was a lot of talk of me playing at Newcastle when we had a few injuries," said the former Archbishop Grimshaw pupil.
"However, that didn't happen so it was a real shock to me when the manager pulled me to one side at the start of training.
"I thought I was in trouble, but he said that he had spoken to my mum and decided to tell me I was playing the day before the game.
"I admit that I woke up a few times on Friday night with various scenarios racing through my mind, but I am glad I knew as it enabled me to prepare properly.
"You always set yourself targets in football and when I signed as a 16-year-old I had always pictured myself playing in the first team. My next target is to play well enough to hold down a regular position in the team."
Painter, who is based in Curdworth, has strong family connections with the club and can call on advice from someone who has seen it, done it and worn the t-shirt.
His mother's cousin, Michael Clarke, spent two years at St Andrew's as an apprentice before carving out a professional career with Barnsley and Scarborough.
Clarke is now a regular in the Birmingham City 'old boys' team that plays charity games throughout the Midlands and Painter admits he has utilised Clarke's knowledge.
"I have spoken to Micky a lot on the phone," said Painter. "He's been through it all before and knows exactly the right things to say.
"The best advice he has given me is to just go out there and give it you best every game, but make sure you enjoy it.
"He said that there would be a million and one people giving me advice on how to play the game, so he reckoned that was the last thing he should be doing.
"I have also spoken a lot with Keith Bertschin [reserve team manager]. He has put a lot of time and effort in and I know he is pleased to see one of 'his' players doing well.
"My family are pleased as well and a big group of them have been at every game.
"They are all Birmingham fans except for my sister, Jodie's boyfriend. He supports the team from the other half of the city, but when I am playing he wants to see us win and me do well. He hasn't got any choice in the matter!" ..SUPL: