Francis Ngannou will return to action in the New Year as he takes on Ciryl Gane in a huge title clash at UFC 270.
Ngannou’s next fight has been the focus of chatter in the MMA world after the heavyweight star had to watch on at the interim title clash at UFC 265.
His bout with Derrick Lewis looked a sure thing for a while but Dana White’s company opted for a clash between ‘The Black Beast’ and Gane instead.
Gane won via TKO to claim the interim belt but many were left confused as to why Ngannou was not involved.
Ngannou became the outright UFC heavyweight champion at UFC 260 when he destroyed Stipe Miocic.
Now ‘The Predator’ will be back as 2022 kicks off with a bang in the world of MMA.
Ngannou vs Gane: Date, start time and how to follow
The showpiece event is scheduled to take place on Saturday, January 22 and is being held at the Honda Center in California.
The prelim action will likely get going at 11pm UK time with the main card starting at midnight.
Ngannou vs Gane can then be expected at around 4am on Sunday morning for UK fans but confirmed timings will follow.
The action will be shown on BT Sport and more information on their coverage will be confirmed soon.
Ngannou vs Gane: Fight card
Subject to change
- Main event: Francis Ngannou (c) vs Ciryl Gane (ic) – for UFC Heavyweight Championship
- Brandon Moreno (c) vs Deiveson Figueiredo – for UFC Flyweight Championship
- Greg Hardy vs Alexey Oleynik, Heavyweight
- Cody Stamann vs Said Nurmagomedov, Bantamweight
- Movsar Evloev vs Ilia Topuria, Featherweight
- Poliana Botelho vs Ji Yeon Kim, Women’s Flyweight
- Warlley Alves vs Jack Della, Welterweight
- Tony Gravely vs Saimon Oliveira, Bantamweight
- Rodolfo Vieira vs Wellington Turman, Middleweight
- Trevin Giles vs Michael Morales, Welterweight
- Viviane Araujo vs Alexa Grasso, Women’s Flyweight
- Matt Frevola vs Genaro Valdez, Lightweight
- Kay Hansen vs Jasmine Jasudavicius, Women’s Flyweight
Ngannou has admitted he wasn’t happy with how the UFC has portrayed him during his absence from the Octagon.
Promos for the MMA company suggested that the 35-year-old would be on holiday rather than have his first title defence at UFC 265.
Ngannou told the The MMA Hour: “The only issue is how — because on my end, I know that was the way to apply pressure — it didn’t seem right.
“I find it so awkward that it didn’t even bother me. I’m like, what’s going on? OK, let’s do it. What bothers me is the fact that to promote that fight they were trying to discredit me and pretend, ‘If you want to go on vacation, keep yourself and when you want to fight, we are here.’
“No, I want to fight and I wasn’t on vacation. And they use a video from Embedded to play that game, to pretend to discredit me and show that I was on vacation.
“That bothers me because that’s not right. I know that is not true, it’s just to discredit me, to control the narrative.
“I don’t have a problem if they want to do the interim, just do the interim without sabotaging me.”
He added: “Not to mention they have to give me at least time to maybe go home and introduce the belt for my people, for my country, for my family.
“Why was the rush so bad? In the past two years I have fought twice and suddenly I have to defend my title after two months? What is the rush?
“What’s wrong? Why can’t I have the average time as everybody, three or four months?”