The Ultimate Fighting Championship is back in action this weekend, returning to Poland for the latest fight night card.
It’s just the second time in the company’s history that MMA’s leading promotion has travelled to Poland after Gabriel Gonzaga fought Mirko Cro Cop back in April 2015.
The Ergo Arena will play host to another night of fights – we preview and predict the main event below…
Welterweight – Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone (32-9) vs Darren Till (15-0-1)
Popular UFC welterweight, Donald Cerrone, returns to action in the main event against an up-and-coming contender, Darren Till.
Cerrone fights for the first time since UFC 214 where he lost a decision against Robbie Lawler in what was a fight of the night contender.
Lawler pressed the action in the first, hurting Cerrone with vicious strikes and knees to the body before finishing strongly in round three to take a unanimous 29-28 victory.
‘Cowboy’ is currently on a slide after Jorge Masvidal snapped his four-fight win streak – he has lost his two fights and will be looking to bounce back with a win against Till.
Nevertheless, Cerrone is still an opponent to be feared with his head kicks capable of ending the fight in an instant – ask Rick Story.
Things do not get any easier for the veteran American as he faces an extremely dangerous opponent in Till – who is currently undefeated in his professional career.
The Liverpool-born fight, who speaks fluent Portuguese after spending three years training in Brazil, is 15-0-1 and has won three of his four UFC fights.
He knocked out his opponent with a vicious elbow in his debut before picking up dominant decision wins over Jessin Ayari and Bojan Velickovic but faces his toughest test yet against Cerrone.
Both fighters have excellent muay thai and the fight should remain standing for the majority, but many people underestimate Cerrone’s ability on the ground and his underrated takedown game.
Till is a powerful southpaw, something which his opponent has typically struggled against – losing to the likes of Nate Diaz, Rafael Dos Anjos and Anthony Pettis.
Whether the 24-year-old can weather the storm if Cerrone takes him into deep waters remains to be seen given that Till prefers to counter rather than dictate the pace of the bout.
Another potential problem for the Liverpudlian is leg kicks. Velickovic was able to chew him up with lead leg low kicks, and Cerrone’s leg kicks are a crucial part of his game to set up his strikes.
However, momentum is with Till, and a win over ‘Cowboy’ would place him in the top ten in the welterweight division – confidence is high, and a potential star is in the making.
Being a fiercely loyal Scouser, I’m backing Till to knock ‘Cowboy’ out before making a run through the 170-pound division before getting a crack at Tyron Woodley’s belt.
PREDICTION: Till via KO
Can Darren Till beat Donald Cerrone to rise in the welterweight rankings? Comment below