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Francimar Barroso wants to avenge ‘intentional' headbutt with quick win over Darren Stewart at UFC London

UFC Fight Night 81 Weigh-Ins Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Francimar Barroso and Darren Stewart collided for the first time four months ago, and the light heavyweight contest was surrounded by controversy.

Stewart made quick work of the Brazilian at UFC Fight Night 100 in Sao Paulo, winning by TKO in just 94 seconds. However, the Brazilian MMA Athletic Commission (CABMMA) later overturned the result to a no-contest due to an unintentional headbutt, a clash of heads that happened moments before referee Eduardo Hardy stopped the fight.

The UFC decided to run it back, this time in Stewart’s home country. At Saturday night’s UFC Fight Night 107 in London, “Bodao" and “The Dentist” will meet one more time, and the Nova Uniao fighter still thinks the headbutt was intentional.

"I was standing in front of him, so I saw he did it on purpose,” Barroso told MMA Fighting. "That’s the way I saw it. He can he it wasn’t intentional, but I think it was intentional because he moved forward to hit me. The fight should have been stopped right away, but that's in the past now. I don’t want to remember that moment. I was feeling great to fight that night, and I’m even better now because I’ve done two training camps for him.”

"If you have a mouth you can say whatever you want, and of course he’d say (it wasn’t intentional),” Barroso continued. "I’m a fair man, I don’t like anything illegal, low blows. You tried to be smart and I didn’t like it. I’ll show him inside the Octagon how heavy my hands are, my shins. I’ll show him how it’s done. He will have to swallow everything he said, and it will be quick. I can’t wait to step inside the Octagon."

Even though they didn’t share the cage for more than two minutes, Barroso says learned a few things about his rival.

"The fight didn’t last much (before) that headbutt happened, but I could feel his strength and I know how he reacts,” Barroso said. "It was easier to study because it’s a rematch. We always try to look for more details, but I didn’t have much work studying him this time.”

Going after for his fourth UFC win and still gunning for his first knockout inside the Octagon, “Bodao" feels more motivated than ever for the first rematch of his MMA career.

"Fighters always say that the next fight is the most important, but this really is one of the most important fighters in my life because I’m really hungry for it,” Barroso said. "After that night in Sao Paulo, after that fight, I spent a whole week asking ‘Dede' (Pederneiras) for a rematch. I was already training when they told me we would fight again, so I had two intense months of preparation. I’m motivated. We didn’t fight last time, and now I’m going to fight.

"I have some surprises for him,” Barroso continued. "I’m prepared for his little game. He might try something this time, but I’m ready of anything he does. I know how he fights now. I believe I can catch him on the ground, and if the fight stays standing, I’ll definitely knock him out. I’m the better fighter."

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