STOKE CITY hope to discover the full extent of Robert Huth’s condition in the next 24 hours . . . after confirming that the initial diagnosis is suspected meningitis.
The German international defender is due to undergo further tests in hospital to determine the strain of meningitis and the prognosis in terms of his recovery.
Huth was rushed into hospital on Monday after the symptoms which first became apparent in the United States got progressively worse following his return home.
Manager Tony Pulis stressed that the length of the defender’s absence from City’s build-up to the new season was of secondary importance at this moment in time.
“It’s a massive, massive worry for us, but the most important thing right now is Robert’s health and we are keeping our fingers crossed that he’ll be okay,” he said.
“We don’t know the full extent of it at the moment, but he’ll be undergoing more tests, so hopefully we’ll know more about the situation with him on Wednesday.”
City’s manager added: “He started to feel unwell just before we returned home from the United States last week and then felt a lot worse over the weekend.”
While Huth is Pulis’ prime concern with the new season now only ten days away, he also has worries over the fitness of a number of other key players.
As the Potters now turn their attention to a pre-season visit to Germany on Friday, where they will face the Bundesliga newcomers Sp Vgg Greuther Furth, they will be hoping that club record signing Peter Crouch, Matthew Etherington and Marc Wilson will be fit.
Crouch missed the game at Yeovil Town with a bruised hip sustained at Torquay, while Etherington and Wilson were withdrawn on Tuesday with sore backs.
“Hopefully, they will be okay for Friday,” said Pulis. “In each case, we didn’t want to take any chances with them, so they should be back.
“The biggest concern though is Huthy because if we lost another centre half right now, then we would be really struggling going into the new season.
“But we hope to address that situation with what we are looking to do in the transfer market in terms of incoming and outgoing deals to freshen up the squad.”