Hull boss Iain Dowie remains hopeful captain George Boateng's injury is not as serious as first feared after the midfielder was knocked unconscious in the 2-0 defeat at Stoke.
Boateng was caught in the head by Tuncay Sanli's overhead kick and after lengthy treatment was taken from the field on a stretcher to a waiting ambulance. Dowie said it was too early to assess whether or not the Dutchman had fractured his jaw.
"There was a lot of blood in his airway and we had to suction that out as he was struggling to breathe," he said. "By the time he left he was a lot more comfortable. He will have to stay in hospital and I'll see him overnight."
He added: "It is a bitter blow, particularly the time it happened when we were in the ascendancy.
"It was a fantastic challenge and that is the type of character he is - but there was no malice from Tuncay as I think he was shocked too.
"It is a hell of a whack. It is a nasty injury but hopefully he is fine and there is nothing wrong with his jaw because that would be a real blow. We've had some curve balls thrown at us already but we've got to get on with it."
Stoke boss Tony Pulis also absolved Tuncay of any blame.
"It was unfortunate. I don't think `Tunny' knew the lad was behind him so you can't apportion any blame," he said. "It was disappointing and you never want to see that."
Striker Ricardo Fuller scored for the second successive match when he capitalised on a sixth-minute error by Paul McShane to clip a shot past Boaz Myhill.
The Tigers had to play the last 15 minutes - plus the resulting eight minutes of injury time - with 10 men after Boateng's injury as Dowie had made three substitutions and the extra space was exploited by Liam Lawrence in the 90th minute, when he fired past Myhill and into the far corner of the net.
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