Conor McGregor will return to the octagon in July for his trilogy with Dustin Poirier, and believes he will be back again before the year is out.
Since a stunning eleven month run between December 2015-16 where McGregor fought four times in three different weight classes, the Irishman has tended to fight once a year, and even missed the whole of 2019.
But he has insisted he is on a tear that will see him back at the summit of the Lightweight division where he became champion in 2016 by beating Eddie Alvarez at UFC 205.
Speaking to fans in a frank Twitter Q&A session, McGregor said that he was expecting to have ‘at least’ two more fights in 2021.
The division has been without a champion since Khabib Nurmagomedov’s retirement last year, but that will change this weekend when Michael Chandler faces Charles Oliveira at UFC 262 on Saturday in Texas.
Dustin Poirier was believed to be the top contender in the division after his knockout win over McGregor at UFC 257 in January, but opted for a lucrative trilogy with the Irishman instead.
And it is expected that the winner of the July bout will be the first title defence for Saturday night’s winner.
McGregor was surprisingly honest with his 8.6 million followers during the Q&A, and made the admission that he would be fighting away from his fiancee Dee Devlin and children Conor and Croia when he rematches with Porier.
“I am going to do this fight away from the family,” he said. “For a change.
“Fights and boppies and cuddles is a hard one to balance, I’m going into this one a wild dog.”
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He also revealed plans to return to welterweight, where he could potentially fight champion Kamaru Usman in an effort to secure an unprecedented third belt.
He became the first fighter to ever hold simultaneous world titles in the UFC back in 2016, but has since gone 1-2 in the octagon being submitted by Khabib Nurmagomedov and knocked out by Poirier either side of a 40-second demolition of Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone.
But he is still one of the highest drawing pay-per-view stars in the sport, and has previously had a back-and-forth with 170 lb champion Kamaru Usman, whose manager Ali Abdelaziz has long been a thorn in his side.
Should he lose to Poirier, McGregor still has options in the promotion, and has often discussed wanting to fight UFC 262 co-main event star Tony Ferguson.