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James Gallagher undergoes ‘successful’ knee surgery, back training in six weeks

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James Gallagher
James Gallagher underwent knee surgery over the weekend.
Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

James Gallagher underwent a successful knee surgery over the weekend following his forced withdrawal from Dublin’s Bellator 187 on Nov. 10, which would have been the 21-year-old’s promotional main event debut.

According to Gallagher, the surgery went even better than expected and he hopes to be back on the mats in six weeks time.

“The plan was to remove some of my hamstring so they could use that to attach my LCL together. They also had to have a look at my PCL,” he told

“In the end they didn’t have to touch anything, so the surgery was very successful. They just had to clear out a load of cartilage and scope out some other stuff that was in my knee, but they didn’t have to touch the ligaments at all.

“I’ll be back training in about six weeks.”

Gallagher said the result of the surgery was as good as he could have hoped for.

“It’s the best thing ever. It’s probably the best result I could’ve asked for once I knew they were going to open the knee up,” he explained.

“Obviously, if they had taken some of the hamstring away for the LCL, it would have been a lot more time in recovery. You’re talking a long time before I could’ve been back.

“That was the situation I was sure I was going to wake up to, but straight after the surgery they said I could probably get back on the mats in six weeks.”

“The Strabanimal” claimed that he is already walking and has begun rehabbing the injury.

“I’m walking already. The next morning, they medical staff had me walking up and down the stairs,” he said.

“I mean, I’m not going on any long walks, I’m still on crutches, but I can still get myself about. It’s just small steps to build the strength back up.

“It’s crazy that I’m moving it at all, really. I already have some simple exercises that I’ve been doing and it’s been going well.”

Initially, the undefeated Irishman was aiming for a return to action in March, but now he hopes to return even sooner.

“I think we could do March no problem. I even think it could be closer. I’m just going to try and stay in shape and do what I can to have the best recovery possible.

“As soon as I’m ready to go, I’ll let Bellator know I want to get back in there.”