A man was attacked and knocked unconscious by a gang of youths as he walked down a street in Fenton.
The assault happened as the 35-year-old victim was walking along Standard Street.
He was approached by four youths who began to throw punches.
The man tried to run away, turning onto City Road, but was then approached by several more people and attacked near The Newtown pub.
He was knocked to the floor unconscious and suffered serious face injuries and was treated at the University Hospital of North Staffordshire.
Police are seeking witnesses to the attack which happened at 10.20pm on Friday February 1
They want to speak to motorists who were forced to stop to avoid the assault in City Road.
Insp Chris Harrington, from Stoke-on-Trent South Local Policing Team (LPT), said: “This was an unprovoked assault on a man walking alone on Friday night.
“The area was busy with pedestrians and motorists and I would urge anyone with information, or who knows the identity of those involved, to come forward.
“Officers are studying CCTV footage and have been carrying out inquiries in the area.
“Fortunately these type of incidents are rare and Staffordshire Police remains committed to reducing violent crime in the communities we serve and bring those responsible for such acts to justice.”
Anyone with information is asked to contact DC Paul Rigby at Staffordshire Police on 101 quoting incident number 780 of February 1, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.