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14 Dec, 2019 10:13

OFFICIAL: UFC confirms Khabib vs Ferguson date & location

OFFICIAL: UFC confirms Khabib vs Ferguson date & location

The UFC has officially announced the lightweight title fight between champion Khabib Nurmagomedov and challenger Tony Ferguson will take place on April 18 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.

While the match-up has essentially been a “done deal” since the end of November, the UFC gave its first official confirmation of the date, location and card number – UFC 249 – as it posted the announcement across its social media accounts.

“What time is it?” read the message accompanying the post on Instagram.

That was a nod to the Russian lightweight champ’s famous “Khabib time” phrase, but could also be taken as a tip of the hat to Ferguson’s interjection that “it’s Tony time, b*tches,” as he cut off Khabib at a press conference before the pair were slated to meet at the same venue in 2018.

‘El Cucuy’ Ferguson is on a 12-fight win streak spanning seven years, and will aim to become the first man to beat 28-0 Dagestani destroyer Khabib, who last defended his title against Dustin Poirier in Abu Dhabi in September.

Fans will be keeping everything crossed that nothing scuppers Khabib vs Ferguson this time around, with the fight having been scheduled four times previously but falling through on each occasion due to illness or injury to one or other of the pair.

A ‘cursed’ superfight? Why UFC fans are so worried about jinxing Khabib vs Ferguson

The UFC also officially confirmed that Khabib’s former foe Conor McGregor would face Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone in the Irishman’s octagon return at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on January 18.

Khabib, who beat McGregor via fourth-round submission at that venue in October 2018, this week dismissed the Notorious vs Cowboy match-up as a “second league” fight.  

Khabib has said he will step up training for his bout with Ferguson in January, while his father and trainer Abdulmanap has called it "one of the most important fights in UFC history."

'Khabib won't stray from his father's plan': Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov details son's strategy ahead of Tony Ferguson fight (VIDEO)