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European Judo Union moves location of European Judo Championships after issue with UFC

Atsushi Tomura/Getty Images

Despite UFC announcing they'd withdrawn their support from the 2015 European Judo Championships to avoid the event's cancelation on February 13th, it appears their actions were not enough to satisfy the European Judo Union (EJU). According to a statement released on their website, EJU has stripped Glasgow, Scotland of host city for the event and issued harsh condemnation of the British Judo Association (BJA), which had attempted to secure UFC's involvement in the event.

"The European Judo Union has come to the realization that the British Judo Association does not fit the EJU criteria to host the EJU flagship event," the statement reads.

"The BJA had entered into a sponsorship agreement which did not meet the EJU values. BJA persisted in this, notwithstanding that it had been warned on a number of occasions that this arrangement was unacceptable to the EJU, which has a right under the event contract to approve or disapprove any sponsorships of EJU events."

While the EJU does not mention the UFC by name, independent reports confirm their involvement is the one in question. The EJU also said the BJA had failed to meet the terms of their contract in other ways beyond the UFC's involvement. Beyond speculation about the EJU's reasons for not wanting the UFC involved, there has been no official reason given by the governing body.

"In their several e-mails and telephone conversations the BJA refereed to a loss of funding. In addition, the BJA missed the agreed deadline to pay the event license fee, which is also a breach of contract.

"Taking all of the above into consideration, and given the limited time to the staging of the European Championships, in order to protect the interests of the EJU national federations and European judoka, EJU Executive Committee have unanimously taken the decision to withdraw the event from Glasgow and designate as quickly as possible an alternative host who is willing and able to stage these continental judo championships."

The EJU has not announced where the event will now take place. MMA Fighting asked the EJU for specific comment, but has not received a reply at the time of this writing.

Andrew Scoular, head of the BJA, said they are still attempting to have the EJU's decision reversed.

"Following discussions with the EJU we had cancelled the agreement with UFC to ensure we could still host the Championships," he said. "We are extremely disappointed to have had the European Judo Championships taken away from us in this way and for this reason, and so following the communication with the EJU on Friday evening we have asked to meet in the hope the decision can be reversed to allow us to still deliver the event as planned."

The UFC previously announced their sponsorship the event in early February, saying their intent was to "support the event with branding, marketing and also promotion of the event to their audience of engaged mixed martial artists - of which Judo is a foundation discipline- around the world."

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