Former Chelsea goalkeeper Ricardo Prasel is no longer pursuing a UFC deal.
The soccer standout who became an MMA heavyweight in Brazil makes his second KSW appearance on Saturday in Lodz, Poland, and he has a new goal in mind.
“KSW is very strong here in Poland,” Prasel, who faces former UFC fighter Daniel Omielanczuk in the co-main event of KSW 70, said in an interview with MMA Fighting. “To me, this is the biggest promotion in Europe, even though they only do events in Poland. Their pay is very close to what the UFC pays their newcomers today. I don’t know how it’s going to be if we re-sign, but the expectation of making a career and making money here in Poland is going very well.”
Prasel competed for a UFC contract when he met Don’Tale Mayes at Dana White’s Contender Series in 2019, but he lost with a second left in the opening round. After traveling all over the world, the Brazilian signed with KSW and stopped Michal Kita in his KSW debut this past March.
Yet, Prasel believes that coming up short at DWCS made him a better fighter.
“Regardless of losing or winning, we always learn something,” he said. “I’ve learned in all of my fights, especially the ones I’ve lost. We always take away something positive from defeats to make sure it never happens again. I just wanna make the most of this opportunity at KSW and don’t let it slide like I did that time.”
His opponent Omielanczuk sports a 25-12-1-1 record that includes a UFC victory over Aleksei Oleinik. Prasel considers him “a tough opponent, very experienced and strategic.”
Prasel had to dig deep to win his KSW debut after getting hurt in the opening stanza, and he hopes to win without much “suffering” this time.
“With or without suffering, winning is what matters the most, having my hands raised in the end,” Prasel said. “I hope that’s what happens.”
“He’s beaten several opponent and fought in the UFC before,” he said of Omielanczuk. “Beating someone like him will definitely get the attention from all over the world, but right now I have no desire to leave KSW and try the UFC or something like that. I’m happy to be where I am and am focused on putting on great fights here at KSW.”