Police on Merseyside are investigating after a man was seriously assaulted in an alleyway.
The emergency services were called to the alleyway, near Hulme Street in Southport, at about 0430 BST on Friday.
The 25-year-old man had suffered serious head injuries and was rushed to hospital.
Det Sgt Richie Jones, of Merseyside Police, said: "This was an extremely nasty assault on a man who had simply been enjoying a night out."
He appealed to any witnesses to contact police.
"Community information is vital when investigating reports of this type," he added.