Khabib Nurmagomedov insists he’s still willing to fight Tony Ferguson later this month, telling the UFC: “Give me location.” Nurmagomedov was scheduled to defend his lightweight title against the Ultimate Fighter season 13 winner a week on Saturday in the main event of UFC 249, a card which currently doesn’t have a venue due to the coronavirus outbreak.
On Wednesday night, however, ‘The Eagle’ appeared to rule himself out of the contest after revealing he’s on lockdown in Russia, who have introduced a blanket travel ban to help curb the spread of COVID-19.
The Dagestani, however, has appeared to have performed a U-turn by insisting he’s still willing to lock horns with ‘El Cucuy’, who he’s been scheduled to face a staggering five times.
He told ESPN: “Right now, if they give me location and I can come out from Russia and I can go to any country.
“US, Abu Dhabi, doesn’t matter. I’m going to fight, 100 per cent. Just give me location.
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Right now, if they give me location and I can come out from Russia and I can go to any country
“Every day, I send Dana White a message. ‘Hey, where’s my location.’ This is not my mistake.
“Too many crazy stuff, too many questions and I don’t have answer.
“I understand people are upset because this fight, this is like a dream fight for fans. This is my dream fight.
“I lose money, I lose so much money. Nobody lose like I lose. Nobody. I lose so much things. I want to fight.”
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Nurmagomedov came in for intense criticism from Ferguson, Conor McGregor and some sections of the MMA fan base after appearing to withdraw from the fight in an lengthy Instagram statement.
But Russia’s first UFC champion firmly believes the flak he’s received over the last few days has been completely unwarranted.
“Everything [that] happened, everybody knows,” Nurmagomedov said in an Instagram Live broadcast. “I can’t control this!
“My name is Khabib, I am not coronavirus. My name is Khabib, Dana [White] is Dana. Tony Ferguson is Tony Ferguson.
“The No 1 thing that makes me crazy is when people say that I pulled out – I don’t understand this.
“I’m still training, very hard since December.”
The UFC have also irked Nurmagomedov with their failure to inform him of the new location of his long-awaited showdown with Ferguson – which has been five years in the making.
“This is not a regular fight,” he said. “16 days before the fight, I do not know the location. What is this?! This is not professional.”
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