UFC will return to British soil this summer. Following the success of UFC London, the promotion decided to return to the UK asap. This new event will be housed at the O2 Arena in London – again.
But despite that, many are still hoping the promotion will stage another event in Liverpool. UFC currently has a number of Liverpudlians on the roster so it’s only logical.
But apparently, that won’t be happening soon. Former UFC welterweight Dan Hardy shot down the hopes for a Liverpool homecoming.
UFC had previously held events in ‘The World Capital of Pop’ headlined by hometown star Darren Till against Stephen Thompson back in May 2018.
The event took place in Liverpool Arena formerly known as the Echo Arena. Unfortunately, the city hasn’t seen a UFC event held there since.
The Arena has a new sponsor – it got renamed to the Marsks & Spencer’s Bank Arena in 2019.
UFC is a home for several rising stars from Liverpool like Paddy Pimblett and Molly McCann and Darren Till.
During a recent appearance on The MMA Hour, former British fighter Dan Hardy explained:
“This is the reason why the UFC aren’t going back to Liverpool, is because they’ve got a different sponsor at the arena. And the sponsor won’t allow combat sports. Yeah, the Echo is no longer the Echo. I think it’s the M&S Arena, Marks & Spencer. It’s a different brand, and they won’t allow combat sports. So, that’s what’s putting the block on Paddy and Molly coming back to Liverpool. Very, Very sad. Really disappointing, and very short-sighted of that brand… It’d be incredible.”
However, the M&S Bank Arena has previously held a boxing event under this current sponsor. A Probellum card headlined by Paul Butler against Jonas Sultan was held there last April.
Since there are no further details available, it isn’t clear whether the sponsors change their minds or if the rule applies only to MMA.