Ilir Latifi will get a homecoming fight against a newly signed Polish standout.
Latifi (9-3 MMA, 2-1 UFC) is set to take on Jan Blachowicz (17-3 MMA, 0-0 UFC) when the UFC returns to Latifi’s home country of Sweden in October. Promotion officials announced the new UFC Fight Night 53 light heavyweight booking Wednesday morning.
UFC Fight Night 53 takes place Oct. 4 at Ericsson Globe in Stockholm. The event is expected to stream on UFC Fight Pass in the United States.
Latifi is fresh off a big knockout win less than two weeks ago at UFC Fight Night 46 in Dublin, where he stopped newcomer Chris Dempsey a little more than two minutes into the fight. It was the Swede’s second straight first-round stoppage win after a March submission of Cyrille Diabate at UFC Fight Night 37 in London.
Latifi will fight in Stockholm for the first time since his UFC debut in April 2013, which came on just three days’ notice when he filled in for injured training partner Alexander Gustafsson in the main event against Gegard Mousasi. He dropped a decision, but impressed the UFC brass with his willingness to step in under far-from-ideal circumstances for his UFC debut against a former champion.
Blachowicz comes to the UFC on the strength of five straight wins for the KSW promotion in his native Poland. He’s been inactive since March 2013, but his past four wins have been decision victories against UFC veterans Goran Reljic, Houston Alexander, Mario Miranda and Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou. The 31-year-old has 11 of his 17 career wins by stoppage
With the addition, the latest UFC Fight Night 53 card now includes:
- Nico Musoke vs. Amir Sadollah
- Niklas Backstrom vs. Mike Wilkinson
- Ernest Chavez vs. Zubaira Tukhugov
- Dennis Siver vs. Robert Whiteford
- Jan Blachowicz vs. Ilir Latifi
For more on UFC Fight Night 53, stay tuned to the UFC Rumors section of the site.
(Pictured: Ilir Latifi)