Hull City striker Craig Fagan could be out for three months after a dreadful challenge by Newcastle's Danny Guthrie left the forward with a broken leg.
Fagan was shielding the ball in the corner, looking to play out time in Premier League new boys Hull's 2-1 win away to Newcastle on Saturday when Guthrie ploughed straight into the back of Fagan and then received a straight red card.
His sending off compounded a miserable match for Newcastle, which came just a day before owner Mike Ashley put the club up for sale in response to protests by fans who blamed him for the exit of popular manager Kevin Keegan.
Fagan left the ground on crutches and Hull confirmed Monday that an X-ray had revealed the 25-year-old former Derby forward had suffered a fractured right tibia, which could keep him out of action for between six weeks and three months.
Angry Tigers manager Phil Brown said there was no excuse for Guthrie's tackle, telling the Hull Daily Mail: “It cannot be tolerated, it needs to be kicked out of the game.
“When you see that the end product is him putting a fellow pro in a cast, it's just not right.
“That's the horrible side of the game. I don't care what is going on at Newcastle, you cannot tolerate this.
“If I go back to the incident, my players were killing time in the corner, something that every Premier League club does, no matter who you are.
“In the process of doing that, someone has decided to take the matter into his own hands and lashed out at Craig Fagan.”
A contrite Guthrie insisted later Monday his challenge had been “totally out of character”, telling Newcastle's official website: “I was very upset to hear the news concerning Craig.
“The club have been in touch with Hull City on my behalf because I want to speak to Craig in person to apologise and wish him a speedy recovery. I hope to be able to do that as soon as possible.
“It was a challenge that came purely out of frustration towards the end of Saturday's game, but anybody who knows me will accept it was totally out of character on my part.”
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