Been there, done that. A few years ago, when filling from jerrycans, a small piece of towel paper (some 1x1 cm) went into. I then sailed from the S of France
to Menorca, then Mallorca, then Ibiza. Lot of motoring in a mostly windless summer. Then, a heavy blow of Tramontana/Mistral that lasted 3 days, anchored in a cala of Ibiza, and when the wind
again around Formentera in heavy swell. And, guess what? The engine
stopped abruptly in a 2 m of glassy swell close to the coast. I had to open the floors, access the central diesel
tank, open the inspection
out the engine
intake - that was duly clogged with the very same paper I spotted a week before, clean it, reinstall and bleed the engine. All accomplished before hitting the rocks of Formentera, with a useless main just dampening the rocking and in almost 40°C.
This is the reason why I warmly advise to proceed at once to do what I did the day after: buy a filter for the intake end and install it. I acknowledge having been lucky: the weather
could have been worse and the coast closer.