By Niall Clarke
- The UFC is returning to London on the 27th February
- Anderson Silva vs Michael Bisping will headline the card
- It is the first event in the UK since UFC Fight Night: Glasgow last July
Britain’s Michael Bisping will fight former Middleweight champion Anderson Silva in the main event of UFC Fight Night: London.
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The world’s leading MMA organisation will return to the English capital on the 27th of February for the event which will take place in the O2 arena.
Bisping vs Silva will headline the card that is due to be broadcast on UFC Fight Pass in a long awaited battle between two Middleweight veterans.
The Brit is arguably the pound for pound best fighter this country has had in the sport, and has been a perennial Middleweight contender for years. But despite some big wins and performances during his career, Bisping has failed to get far enough up the ladder to contend for the Middleweight crown.
It was a title that was for a long time held by Silva. The Brazilian MMA legend dominated the division from 2006 until 2013 where his record breaking 16 fight win streak in the organisation was ended via knockout to Chris Weidman. The All-American won the rematch via TKO due to a broken leg sustained by Silva during the fight.
Bisping will get the fight he has long been clamoring when he welcomes Silva back into the Octagon in February. The Englishman has been wanting to fight the former pound for pound king for years but never got the title shot.
The Manchester native is currently riding two fight win streak but has not fought since UFC: Glasgow where he defeated Thales Leites by spit decision in July.
The Englishman is never shy of throwing some verbal jabs and he has promised to end ‘Coward’ Silva’s career.
“A lot of people when they fought Anderson were beaten mentally before the fight started. Diaz wasn’t scared of him and it threw Anderson off and you’ll see the same here.” Bisping told The Daily Mail
“I’ll give him the respect he deserves he deserves but I’m signing this contract to beat him, to knock him out and end his career.
“I’ll give him zero respect once the cage door shuts.”
The Brazilian has not fought since his bout with Nick Diaz last January. Silva initially won the fight by unanimous decision but failed the post fight drug test which resulted in a no contest and a 12 month suspension.
“We’re all chasing a dream – a dream of being a champion,” Bisping added. “You’ve got to do it through hard work and determination.
“The facts of the matter is that Anderson Silva tested positive for not one, not two, but for three banned substances. And while I respect him as a fighter, I lost a lot of respect for him for that.
“This fight represents me beating all of these people who try to beat the system. I have never taken performance-enhancing drugs in my life.
“To call yourself a martial artist and take performance-enhancing drugs is the biggest contradiction you can make.
“He should be ashamed of himself.
“I hope Anderson is tested many times. He should be tested many times because he failed the test – not once, not twice, but three times.
“A while ago I said to myself I was over fighting people who had an unfair advantage.
“I’ve fallen foul of it several times now but I started to think about whether I would take the fight and he’s still Anderson Silva and it’s a bucket list fight.
“For that reason we will meet in February.
“But if you take performance-enhancing drugs, you’re a coward.”
Bisping was originally scheduled to face Gegard Mousasi on the card but will instead fight Silva. Mousasi will now face Leites in the co main event.
Rounding out the main card are welterweights Tom Breese vs Keita Nakamura and bantamweights Brad Pickett vs Henry Briones.
Full Fight Card
- Michael Bisping vs. Anderson Silva
- Thales Leites vs. Gegard Mousasi
- Tom Breese vs. Keita Nakamura
- Henry Briones vs. Brad Pickett
- Makwan Amirkhani vs. Mike Wilkinson
- Davey Grant vs. Marlon Vera
- Scott Askham vs. Chris Dempsey
- Arnold Allen vs. Yaotzin Meza
- Krzysztof Jotko vs. Brad Scott
- Rustam Khabilov vs. Norman Parke
- Jarjis Danho vs. Daniel Omielanczuk
- Teemu Packalen vs. Lukasz Sajewski
- Martin Svensson vs. David Teymur
UFC Fight Night: London will take place on February 27 – Buy Tickets here
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