Thomas O’Sullivan, aged 31, of 2 Comeragh Close, The Glen, Cork, pleaded guilty to a charge of robbery from a man at Spring Lane, Blackpool, Cork, at lunchtime on May 24.
Niamh Stewart, defending, described him as a chronic heroin addict.
Sgt Kieran O’Sullivan said the accused usually denied his crimes but when the evidence was put to him he would plead guilty and co-operate.
Ms Stewart said how sorry he was for what happened and spoke of a very sad family background where he has been living on the streets for years.
Judge Gerard O’Brien said: “Thomas O’Sullivan comes before the court on a plea of guilty. The victim was viciously attacked. Aggravating or mitigating factors include the extreme violence, use of a heavy wooden stick, the gouging of the eye of the injured party, and leaving him bleeding on the ground.
“Thomas O’Sullivan has apologised through his counsel but in my view very late in the day.
“He comes before the court with 119 previous convictions. It is very serious that he finds himself once again before the court. It is a pattern of behaviour. He is unable to break out of a cycle of crime.
“The victim impact statement makes very grim reading indeed.”
The victim, Viron Kaja, aged 35, is an Albanian national who has been living in Ireland for the past 16 years and married to an Irish woman with whom he has two children. In a victim impact report, he said the lunchtime robbery was vicious and had deeply affected him.
One man beat him about the body with a long stick. The second attacker caught him around the neck from behind and gouged his left eye with his fingers.
They robbed him of €50, his phone, and a silver tobacco box given to him by his grandfather.
Mr Kaja said the attack had changed him and that he had recurring nightmares of the crime and had failed to complete a welding course he was doing at the time, leaving him unemployed at the moment in Galway, where he lives with his family.
Trevor O’Sullivan, aged 38, with an address at Roche’s Buildings, Richmond Hill, Cork, was given a seven-year sentence with 18 months suspended on the same robbery charge on Wednesday. He had denied the robbery but was found guilty by a jury.