A 21-year-old North Belfast man had his skull fractured in a sectarian attack yesterday morning.
Kevin Milligan of Ardoyne was hit repeatedly over the head with what he believes was either a wheel brace or a hammer during the attack by two men in the early hours of the morning.
Mr Milligan was walking home from a friend's house after watching the Rangers vs Celtic soccer match and was walking home when the attack occurred.
He was walking home along the Cliftonville Road when a car pulled up. Two men got out of the vehicle and hit him twice over the head with a heavy implement.
He had been wearing a Celtic jersey and his assailants called him a "scumbag" as they beat him, his sister revealed.
"When they went for him he sort of jumped back but one of them hit him. When he went down they kept hitting him over the head, maybe two or three times," she said.
"Mum is always saying to him, 'don't walk anywhere, things like this can happen.' But you never expect it to happen," she said.
But for the calls from women to get in the car to stop the attack, she believes her brother would have been killed.
An ambulance later took him to the Mater hospital, where he received five stitches to the head.
According to his sister, when Mr Milligan was asked his name and date of birth by doctors early yesterday morning, he was unable to answer.
Yesterday, his condition was described as stable and doctors were keeping him under observation.
The family noticed masked men outside their home just before midnight. A number of windows were smashed and their car was badly damaged.