A THUG who brutally stabbed a man in a Greenock flat with a 'Rambo knife' as the pair went to hug has been jailed for six years.

William Wilson selected the weapon from his collection of knives before savagely wounding his victim in a shocking unprovoked attack.

He later claimed the man had bad-mouthed him.

The victim managed to get out of the flat in Morton Terrace, leaving a trail of blood behind.

He'd lost around four and a half litres of blood and sustained a collapsed lung and a cut to his liver.

A nurse who was driving by saw him staggering and bleeding before he collapsed in the street and went to his aid.

She found him unconscious with a large chest wound and made a 999 call.

Members of the nearby bowling club brought towels to help stem the blood flow before the man was taken to hospital in Glasgow and underwent emergency surgery.

As he appeared for sentencing at the High Court in Edinburgh yesterday, Judge Lady Scott told Wilson, 24,: "Your actions were deliberate and calculated."

The judge said the crime represented an escalation in Wilson's offending, which dates back to 2012 and includes convictions for assault with a bottle and knife possession.

She told Wilson that he would have jailed him for eight years for his latest crime but for his guilty plea.

Unemployed Wilson had earlier plead guilty to assaulting his 25-year-old victim on September 1 last year to severe injury, permanent disfigurement and danger of life by putting an arm around his neck and striking him on the body with the knife.

He also admitted attempting to defeat the ends of justice by washing floors at the flat and cleaning the weapon used to stab the victim.

The court heard Wilson was living at the flat of his girlfriend when she phoned a friend to invite him round for a drink.

He arrived in the company of the victim.

Wilson went over to hug the man but suddenly put his right arm round his neck and stabbed him with the knife, which had a blade that was more than seven inches long.

When police officers followed the trail of blood from to the door of the flat and found blood-staining inside the premises after forcing entry, Wilson claimed that the blood was his own and that he had cut his finger testing the sharpness of a new machete he had bought days earlier.

Officers found the knife along with two other blades inside a pillow case wrapped in a towel at the flat.

During a phone call made from Wilson at Low Moss Prison to his girlfriend, he was recorded telling her: "He obviously bad-mouthed me. I'm no' having someone bad-mouthing me like that. I'll get out and stab him again."