A THUG with a nose-ring was being hunted by police today following an attack on a middle-aged man in Southampton last night.

The 52-year-old man suffered severe facial injuries after being set upon in Bitterne Road East, Bitterne.

Det Sgt Howard Kiley, of Bitterne CID, said the man, who has not been named, was walking near the junction with Justine Court when the attack happened around 7.25pm.

A nearby resident who found him injured called for an ambulance.

Last night the man rem-ained at Southampton Gen-eral Hospital, where he rec-eived treatment for facial injuries.

Two men were present at the time of the assault, but it is not clear if both took part. Police said one was white, about 30, with shoulder-length hair and may have worn a nose-ring.

Call Bitterne CID on 0845 045 4545 or the Crimestoppers line on 0800 555111.