A tricky trip to Exeter in the EFL Cup is the last thing a depleted Hull need right now.
Exeter v Hull - Tuesday 19:45
Mike Phelan wants this game like he wants a hole in the head. The 53-year-old is in pole position to land the Hull job after leading the crisis-ridden Tigers to successive Premier League victories over Leicester and Swansea, but he surely wants to rotate for this competition with only 13 senior professionals.
If he goes full strength again, not only does he risk fatigue ahead of Manchester United’s visit at the weekend but he potentially risks embarrassment. On balance, sending a load of untested academy products is probably the better shout. If Hull win, he comes up smelling of roses. If they get turned over, he essentially made a calculated decision to throw the game anyway.
Either way, Exeter are capable of keeping to their side of the bargain and landing 90-minute odds of 18/5. In many ways, this game is similar to their FA Cup tie with Liverpool last season when Jurgen Klopp was new to the job and equally worried about burnout. On that occasion, it wasn't in Exeter's interests to win the game, bagging a lucrative replay at Anfield with a 2-2 draw.
Always driven by any opportunity to swell the club coffers, Paul Tisdale will probably be viewing this as his biggest game of the campaign to date. The Grecians haven't had the best of starts in League Two but tend to make hay while the sun shines, which isn't in the midst of early-season randomness, and they are much better than their current record suggests.