Belal Muhammad versus Sean Brady added to UFC 280 in Abu Dhabi

UFC returns to Etihad Arena on October 22, with card headlined by Oliveira-Makhachev title bout

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The intriguing welterweight clash between Belal Muhammad and Sean Brady is the second match-up to be confirmed for UFC 280 in Abu Dhabi.

The bout, reported last week to be in the works, has been added to the October 22 event, joining Charles Oliveira versus Islam Makhachev on the card at Etihad Arena. That fight, which headlines the bill, is for the vacant lightweight title. Organisers announced on Wednesday that Muhammad-Brady had been added to the event.

Currently the No 5-ranked welterweight, Muhammad has fought in Abu Dhabi before, when he secured a submission triumph against Takashi Sato at UFC 242 in September 2019.

In his most recent UFC outing, in April, Muhammad defeated Vicente Luque in Las Vegas via unanimous decision to extend his unbeaten streak to eight (seven wins and one No Contest). His professional mixed martial arts record reads 21-3.

In January, Muhammad told The National that he would love to compete for the welterweight title in Abu Dhabi, saying: “Honestly, it’ll be a dream come true. It’s one of those things you’re always thinking about: 'I’m going to win the title, I’m going to be champion, but how can I be champion and where can I be champion?' And if it was over there in Abu Dhabi it’d be amazing.”

While Muhammad is not fighting for the belt, the encounter against Brady represents a serious challenge to his title aspirations. The American remains unbeaten in the pro ranks (15-0), with his last victory coming in November against Michael Chiesa – increasing his record within the UFC to five victories from five. Brady is the division’s No 9-ranked contender.

The bout in Abu Dhabi holds significant weight in the welterweight title running, especially with current champion Kamaru Usman defending his crown against Leon Edwards at UFC 278 next month.

UFC 280 represents the promotion’s first event in the capital since October last year. It marks the conclusion to Abu Dhabi Showdown Week.

Updated: July 21, 2022, 8:29 AM