Suffolk star Allen to face top ten rival in next UFC fight

Suffolk's Arnold Allen is one of the best young fighters in the world. Picture: PA SPORT

Suffolk's Arnold Allen, unbeaten in the UFC, will fight Sodiq Yusuff on April 10 - Credit: PA Archive/PA Images

Suffolk's MMA superstar Arnold Allen will face another fast-rising talent in his next UFC fight in April.

Allen (16-1 MMA, 7-0 UFC) will do battle with 'Super' Sodiq Yusuff (11-1 MMA, 4-0 UFC) in a clash between the ninth and tenth-ranked featherweight fighters on the planet at UFC Fight Night 189 on April 10.

Suffolk's Arnold Allen, right, is 7-0 in the UFC Picture: PA SPORT

Arnold Allen, right, is unbeaten in the UFC - Credit: PA Wire/PA Images

Not only is it a clash of two fighters who are unbeaten in the UFC, and among the best prospects in the sport, but both men are also riding lengthy win streaks - 'Almighty' Allen has won eight in a row overall, and hasn't lost since June 2014, while Yusuff has claimed six straight victories, with his only defeat coming in 2017.

But neither has fought since January 2020 - Trimley's Allen, 27, had two fights fall through last year, so last beat Nik Lentz on January 25, while Yusuff, also 27, was last in action a week earlier, seeing off Andre Filli on points.

It is a fascinating clash between southpaw Allen's slick, fast boxing and incredibly well-rounded MMA game, versus Yusuff's power striking and explosive style.

Arnold Allen, right, is unbeaten in the UFC Picture: PA SPORT

Southpaw Arnold Allen has been tipped as a future UFC champion - Credit: PA Wire/PA Images

Allen was meant to fight MMA icon Jeremy Stephens last November, only for Stephens to pull out, prompting the Suffolk scrapper to call out Edson Barboza, a fight which never materialised.

But a fight - and win - against a fellow top ten ten talent is what Allen needs to take the next step in his promising career, and the clash with Yusuff certainly gives him a chance to make a statement.

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Allen, who includes wins over names like Gilbert Melendez, Lentz and Makwan Amirkhani in his perfect UFC record, said last year: “I don’t think people realise how good I am.

"I’ve got some good names on my record, but I guess some people say I’ve not fought anyone yet. I know if I talked more or I’d stopped all seven of my wins, I’d be right up at the top of the rankings.

“I’ve always said that when I get to a position where I can start calling people out I will, so you might start seeing me change a little bit – I’m not going to start being an arsehole, but I think I’ve earned the right to do that now.

“I think if I win my next three fights, I’d have to be right up there for a title shot. Or if I get two straight finishes, I can’t see why I wouldn’t be next in line.”

The April 10 card is set to be headlined by a middleweight tussle between Brit Darren Till and Italian Marvin Vettori.

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