Skipper set for Hornets clash

Stoke boss Mark Hughes is optimistic skipper Ryan Shawcross will be fit to face Watford despite suffering an injury scare.

Stoke: Skipper set for Hornets clashStoke: Skipper set for Hornets clash

Shawcross was back in the Potters side against Southampton at the weekend following an eight-week injury absence, but was forced off the field in the closing minutes.

Hughes has now revealed that his influential captain jarred his back after landing awkwardly but does not believe there is any serious damage and is hopeful he will be able to face the Hornets.

“He just had a moment right at the end where he went up for a header and as he was in the air he had a little nudge, got knocked off balance and jarred his back on the other side,” Hughes said.

“We hope it will settle down, but it was one of those freak things that when he was in the air the nudge put him off balance and all the force on landing went through the right-hand side of his back.

“It was the last challenge he made in the game. Prior to that he had 95 minutes or so without any problems whatsoever.

“We will check him out and are hopeful there’s no damage, that it’s just jarring and he will continue at the weekend.

“That’s just how Ryan’s luck has gone and we just have to be patient about it.”

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