Marvin Vettori hoping to earn a crack at Israel Adesanya's middleweight crown by breaking Kevin Holland at UFC on ABC 2
10th April 2021

MARVIN VETTORI reckons an impressive win over Kevin Holland will put him on course to become the first Italian to compete for UFC gold.

The Italian Dream will bid to stretch his win streak to five in a row tonight in the main event of UFC on ABC 2 in Las Vegas.

Vettori's impressive streak – in which he's picked up wins over the highly-touted Karl Roberson and Jack Hermansson – has taken him from prospect to bonafide 185lb contender.

And the Kings MMA standout believes a dominant win over fan favourite Holland will put him on the brink of a rematch with reigning UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya.

Vettori told SunSport: "I have to put on an impressive win and I think I will be next in line [for a title shot].

"I think I deserve it. I definitely feel like I'm going to get it. And that's it.

"I have to go out on Saturday and put on a great performance. That's where my focus is.

"We'll think about the after, after, but I think I'm going to be next in line."

Although there's somewhat of a log jam at the top of the middleweight division, it's not beyond the realm of possibility that Vettori could jump the queue of contenders with a statement-making victory over Holland.


If that were to be the case, the 27-year-old would become the first Italian to compete for a UFC title in the promotion's 28-year history.

While many would deem the potential accolade to be an added burden, Mezzocorona's Vettori sees it as additional motivation.

He said: "I don't see it as pressure too much. It's an honour, actually, to represent the fighting of Italy – the fighting spirit of Italy.

"I want to show the Italians fight at the highest level of the sport. It's an honour and I feel like Italy is coming together.

"And it's also an honour to be the guy that Italy follows the sport for. They're going to watch MMA because of me. And it's beautiful.

"It's like when Italy was watching Moto GP because of Valentino Rossi.

"Skiing now has become a big thing, but like Alberto Tomba back then. These guys. It's an honour."

Before Vettori can think about a title shot and exacting revenge on Adesanya, he must first get past Holland – a short-notice replacement for Brit Darren Till.

Vettori is confident of getting the better of the explosive and dynamic Californian, who he reckons lacks the 'fundamentals' to mix it with the elite of the division.

He said of Holland: "He's just a wild guy in everything he does. He's not really technical.

"Mentally and physically, even the way he fights, he just does what he feels.

"He just goes with the flow. I don't know [what to say about him], he's just a wild guy. It's okay, though.

"He's a wild guy, but his fundamentals are not so great. And fundamentals will always beat this wildness and s**t."

Former Venator star Vettori reckons he'll exploit the holes he's seen in Holland's game and push the Dana White's Contender Series alum to breaking point.

He continued: "I'm just going to approach it very methodically and a create those cracks, put him in uncomfortable situations and he will break.

"He will break, I am sure of that."

He added: "[It'll be] a win by broken will. It'll be a win for Marvin Vettori by broken will."

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