Hull player Ryan Mason fractures skull, undergoes surgery

LONDON: Hull record-signing Ryan Mason underwent surgery after fracturing his skull during a clash of heads during a Premier League match at Chelsea on Sunday.

The 25-year-old midfielder "is in a stable condition and is expected to remain in hospital for the next few days," Hull said in a statement.

The Englishman was taken to the neurosurgery unit at a hospital close to Chelsea's Stamford Bridge after the collision with Chelsea defender Gary Cahill as they went to head the ball.

Mason received treatment for almost 10 minutes on the field before departing on a stretcher, while receiving oxygen.

"Everyone at the club would like to express their sincere thanks for the excellent and swift care" at the hospital, Hull said.

Cahill did manage to return to action after receiving treatment despite doubts about his condition. He scored Chelsea's second goal in a 2-0 victory and completed the game.

"It was a bad accident with Gary and, I must be honest, after the first half also Gary wasn't really good," Chelsea manager Antonio Conte said. "He decided to continue the game. It was very bad this accident."

There was an outpouring of messages to Mason from rival clubs and players, including former club Tottenham. Mason rose from the academy to the first team at the north London club and spent spells on loan at five clubs before making his Premier League debut in 2014.

He scored four times in 70 appearances for Tottenham but left in August after growing frustrated at a lack of first-team opportunities. Hull signed Mason for a club record fee of more than 10 million pounds ($12 million).

He has played for England youth teams and made one appearance for the senior side in a 2015 friendly against Italy.