Tyson Fury predicts Conor McGregor will knockout Donald Cerrone when he makes his return at UFC 246 on Saturday.

McGregor will feature in the octagon for the first time since his October 2018 defeat to Khabib Nurmagomedov in a lightweight title bout that was overshadowed by a post-fight melee outside the cage.

Fury is looking forward to watching the former featherweight and lightweight champion take on Cerrone, the UFC's all-time wins leader, up close in Las Vegas.

Unbeaten boxer Fury, who will attend the bout, believes McGregor will experience a triumphant comeback.

"Conor McGregor is gonna win. I say by knockout. And I'm gonna be there to see it happen cageside," Fury told Fight Hype.

Before entering the octagon, McGregor and Cerrone will first meet on stage at a media event on Wednesday.

The outspoken Irishman has a reputation for making cutting remarks at such occasions, but Cerrone insists it would take a "low blow" to have any effect on him.

However, should Cerrone feel that McGregor crosses the line, he may not be able to wait until the weekend to lay hands on him.

"He's the best at it. He is the best," Cerrone said of McGregor's trash talk.

"The thing is you'd really have to go low, talk about my grandma or my kid and then it would put it on another level.

"You understand what I’m saying? Then I'll just come f*** you up in the lobby type s***.

"I don't think it's ever going to go that way. He understands that. We're fighting, he can talk about that all he wants but don't low blow."

Conor McGregor is confident he will achieve billionaire status by the time he is 35 and wants to fight at the highest level for many more years.

The 31-year-old makes his UFC return in Las Vegas on Saturday against Donald 'Cowboy' Cerrone, as he looks for a first win since his victory over Eddie Alvarez back in November 2016.

McGregor revealed he is not a reckless spender anymore and with the combination of his fight earnings, endorsements and his own ventures such as clothing and whiskey ranges, he expects his wealth to reach 10 figures.

Asked by ESPN if he would fight until he was 40, McGregor said: "Yeah! I don't know, probably. I'm going to have a solid couple of years at least though, I know that. I'll be rocking until a good 35.

"I'll be a billionaire by the time I'm 35."

McGregor expects to achieve the biggest purse of his UFC career against Cowboy, with $80million the figure he has in mind.

He believes his $5m guaranteed purse against Cowboy, which is still a record for a UFC fighter, will be comprehensively eclipsed.

"It's going to be a good pay cheque," he said. "Probably the most ever in my mixed martial arts career. I'm estimating a good $80m.

"We have Australia, Canada and England and Ireland, so it should be a good one.

"[I made] $50m [against Khabib Nurmagomedov]. They think I'm toast but I'm still the bread.

"But no amount of money will stop my hunger to compete and entertain. Long may the opponents continue to come and I'll continue to knock them down."

The Irishman vowed to never forget his roots, having come from a life on welfare to achieve astonishing financial success.

McGregor said: "Of course I make sure I stay to my roots always and keep where I come from in my way of thinking. Never forget.

"I spend a lot less. I have a lot of things. About a year ago I read LeBron James had spent $1.5million annual on his health, his nutrition, training, everything and I spend nothing.

"Only in camp [did I spend] to bring a team together. So I thought that was not the way to do this, I drop money on a bleeding car or a watch!

"So now I'm spending on my health and my fitness, and that helped me. Then you can acquire even more when you are sharp.

"I spend less on possessions now, though you've got to go through that [phase] when you get a windfall. It doesn't excite me now. I'm more interested in creating."

Asked if he reads lists of the highest-paid athletes, McGregor added: "That's my list, I'm coming for that list! It alternates by year, not sure where I was this year, but not bad, I was up there. 

"The decade one I saw Floyd Mayweather was top of the decade, so fair play to him, he's just not so good at the management of it.

"I'm still a good way away [from a billion]. I'll get there. I've got the methods. It's something that excites me, but it's not why I fight. I'm involved in so many businesses but there is no business like the fight business."

Conor McGregor has admitted his preparation for fighting Khabib Nurmagomedov in his last UFC outing was far from ideal given he spent "all bleeding week" downing shots of whiskey.

The Irishman fell to a convincing submission defeat against the Russian in the fourth round of their October 2018 battle in the Octagon at UFC 229, a contest that was followed by a controversial brawl.

But ahead of his comeback against Donald 'Cowboy' Cerrone in Las Vegas on Saturday, McGregor acknowledged he had enjoyed himself a little too much in the build-up to the Khabib bout, as well as taking part in a reckless sparring routine.

"I was drinking all bleeding fight week in the last one," McGregor told ESPN. 

"Yes [it was before the fight]. It [drinking in fight week] had not been [common] to that extent before. I had venom in me or something. I don't know why.

"I was almost too intense and too serious, working too hard in the gym and then not working hard enough outside of it. You've got to be focused outside. 

"You're not as sharp, not as fresh, not as eager to be there [at the gym]. That kept happening, I wouldn't want to be there, then I'd have to scrap, and then off I'd go again. 

"You learn something from everything, some of the work was great. Some parts of it were enjoyable, I do love a good scrap, I've just got to stay focused outside the gym."

Pressed further on his preparation, the 31-year-old added: "I had people holed up in a hotel and I would ring and arrange a fight, they would come to the gym and have a full-blown fight with no headguards.

"I'd have a war, win and knock the guy out and go off and celebrate and come back in three days.

"I wasn't doing what I should have been doing or living the life I should have been living; I've made mistakes and I've been man enough to admit them and correct them."

On Khabib, who has said McGregor needs a long run of wins before being worthy of a second bout, the Dubliner added: "He has fear, he doesn't want [the rematch]. It did get very personal. Some of the things were maybe too far but it's the fight business."

McGregor has also lost to Floyd Mayweather Jr in a lucrative boxing match since his last victory, which came at UFC 205 against Eddie Alvarez more than three years ago.

Punching a 50-year-old man in a pub last year led to a court appearance and a fine but McGregor says he has turned his life around.

He added: "If I'm in the wrong, I'm in the wrong. I let people down and that's it. I'm in a position where I must take control of things and not shy away.

"I've never done that in my career and I never will; the people who believe in me and support me deserve better. It's been a good couple of months, three or four months ago [since I had a drink]. 

"I might not be perfect, but with a good sleep and a full belly I'm damn close."

Floyd Mayweather Jr's manager suggested the legendary boxer would be up for fighting Conor McGregor again after the Irishman declared he would win a rematch.

Mayweather stopped McGregor in the 10th round when the UFC superstar made his professional boxing debut in August 2017.

The unbeaten Mayweather retired for the third time after that bout, but announced last November that he would resume his career yet again in 2020 for a "spectacular event".

McGregor will make his UFC comeback against Donald 'Cowboy' Cerrone on Saturday and the 31-year-old Dubliner took the opportunity to call out Mayweather prior to the fight.

He told told Ariel Helwani's MMA Show on ESPN: "Most certainly, I'd like to rematch Floyd. I think we should rematch Floyd.

"He keeps flirting with it [coming out of retirement] and he can go and pick someone else but it's not going to be the same. I did phenomenal in that fight and the only reason I lost that bout was because I prepared for a back-foot style of opponent.

"And when the fight was like that I was picking him apart. Then he came forward and started pressing and I wasn't sinking into my shots like I am now with my boxing coaches.

"I know I'd beat Floyd if we rematched. When we rematch. It's not going to be a mixed martial arts bout like he said. It was supposed to be me boxing then we'll do a mixed martial arts bout.

"It wasn't written but it was verbal. But that's not going to happen and I'm not even going to push him on it."

Leonard Ellerbe, Mayweather's boss, tweeted in reply to a video of the interview: "@TheNotoriousMMA are you really sure about that champ, you know we can make that happen, asking for a friend?"

UFC insiders believe Conor McGregor is in the best shape of his career before his battle against Donald 'Cowboy' Cerrone in Las Vegas.

McGregor will fight for the first time since his controversial defeat to Khabib Nurmagomedov in October 2018 when he takes on Cowboy on Saturday.

The Irishman has previously trained for mega-bouts against Khabib, Nate Diaz and Eddie Alvarez as well as a lucrative boxing duel with Floyd Mayweather Jr.

But UFC president Dana White has received word that McGregor has never been in a condition as good as he is for his contest with Cowboy.

Victory could propel McGregor to fights against Kamaru Usman and Jorge Masvidal or potentially a rematch with Khabib. 

White has suggsted he could not be better prepared with regard to his fitness, telling TMZ: "I'm hearing he's in phenomenal shape right now.

"The UFC doctor is actually saying he thinks Conor is in the best shape he's ever seen him in. His head seems to be in the right place."

McGregor has been rated as comfortable favourite for the fight against Cowboy, who has lost six of his 10 contests since the start of 2017.

But White warned against anyone expecting Cowboy, who at 36 is five years older than McGregor, to be an easy opponent for the Dubliner, particularly given his recent hiatus from the Octagon. 

"I think that the level of disrespect shown to Cowboy Cerrone by the media, a lot of the fans, and definitely the sports books in Las Vegas, is insanity," continued White.

"And ring rust is real – I believe in it. We'll see how that goes. It's a very interesting fight with two of the baddest in the business to ever do it and this is a fun one."

McGregor was not heeding White's warning at the weekend, insisting he could beat his opponent at any weight, even if he "had the flu".

He said he agreed to fight Cerrone at 170lb because the veteran "does not look well" at 155lb, which is the weight he would need to return to if he ever fights Khabib again.

Welterweight champion Usman and Masvidal, meanwhile, are in the 170lb division.

White added: "Cerrone has fought at 170 many times and is comfortable at 170. Conor McGregor will probably weigh in at 169 or 168 or somewhere around there. It's even hard for Conor to hit 170. 

"Obviously, Conor's been out for a while. Conor has fought two times at 170. He's got a win and a loss at 170. Cowboy Cerrone has gone on these two-fight skids before and come back - he is almost one of those guys that needs something big to fight for.

"It's more than just the money, all the things that go along with it. This is the type of fight that Cowboy Cerrone is an absolute spoiler in. This is his deal. These are the type of fights he likes to be in."

Conor McGregor believes Donald Cerrone looks better at 170 pounds but claimed he could beat his UFC 246 opponent at any weight, even if he had the flu.

Former featherweight and lightweight champion McGregor will make his return to the octagon next Saturday, having not fought since losing to Khabib Nurmagomedov in an October 2018 clash that was overshadowed by a post-bout brawl.

Upon announcing his return from retirement, the Irishman said he was planning three fights in 2020, with Jorge Masvidal – due to his victory over Nate Diaz to clinch the BMF title – and Nurmagomedov his primary targets.

McGregor has also spoken of an interest in taking on UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman after opting to make his return at 170lbs, which he feels is more comfortable for Cerrone.

Asked why he did not decide on a lightweight bout and make things difficult for Cerrone, McGregor told ESPN: "I know, I could have. I just don't think he looks well at 155. He's a 170 fighter.

"I'd beat him at any weight. I'd beat him if I had the flu. I don't need that. I just want to focus on my training and keep myself sharp. I don't want to cut and then build and then cut. I'm happy where I’m at.

"Also 170 is an exciting one for me. I like 170. I like what's going on in the 170 division at the minute.

"You've got Jorge with that [BMF] belt, you've got the other guys fighting for the [championship] belt. I like all of what's going on at 170, and I feel good at 170. I feel energetic – it's what I weigh and that's it. It opens up so many more options, right?"

A potential rematch against Nurmagomedov is unlikely to take place outside of the lightweight division, which McGregor assured is no problem.

He added: "I'm not done at 155, I could make 155 this fight no problem, but I just want to go in fresh and as it is, let the fight play as it is and open up all my options."

Conor McGregor says a fight against UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman would be his priority ahead of a bout with Jorge Masvidal.

The Irishman returns to the Octagon against Donald 'Cowboy' Cerrone at UFC 246 in January.

A rematch against lightweight world champion Khabib Nurmagomedov is also on McGregor's agenda further down the line.

But if he gets past Cerrone – who is nicknamed 'Cowboy' - the prospect of becoming a three-weight champion is more appealing to former featherweight and lightweight title-holder McGregor than a meeting with Masvidal.

"I'm not going to 170 just for Jorge," McGregor said to the Mac Life about Masvidal, who defeated Nate Diaz last year when their fight was stopped due to a cut.

"I'd face Jorge. He hasn't really got anything. I wasn't really that happy with how that bad motherf***** thing ended. 

"I think it's unfinished [with Diaz]. In my opinion, that bout is unfinished. It was only getting into a good bout, I believe. We were robbed of rounds 4 and 5 in that bout.

"But I like that welterweight belt. I liked that welterweight title fight that was on at the weekend, I liked the look of that. I liked the look of Kamaru Usman. I liked the look of Colby [Covington]. 

"I'm open to it all at 170. Gold and I'd say silver because that bad motherf***** belt is a silver one, it's not the best-looking belt. 

"I don't really care about that, I want the gold. I'm after the gold, 155 and 170. They're the belts I am chasing now."

Usman, who has only lost once in 17 fights, was unimpressed by McGregor's suggestion.

The Nigerian responded on Twitter, writing to McGregor: "My man, please just go in there and take your L from Cowboy. Don't even dream of this WW strap because that dream can turn into a nightmare fast."

Earlier this week, UFC president Dana White said he thinks it is "a bad idea" for McGregor to chase a fight with Masvidal.

Masvidal challenged McGregor in November, while Khabib has mocked his former foe's meeting with Cowboy, calling it a "minor league" fight due to the pair's lacklustre recent records.

But McGregor thinks his skills are being overlooked because of his inactivity, having lost to Khabib in his only UFC contest since knocking out Eddie Alvarez in November 2016.

"A lot of people forget about my skill base," he said. 

"I'm going to go in there and remind them. I don't feel these people are on my level when I am committed. I have not been committed for a while, up until about a year ago when I really started committing myself. 

"I look forward to showcasing my skills to the people."

The evolving world of sport means a new decade is likely to see widespread change.

With superstars like Lionel Messi, LeBron James, Roger Federer and Lewis Hamilton unlikely to be plying their trades in 2030, the stage is set for new names to come to the fore.

Omnisport's team of writers have tipped 20 20-year-olds to do just that over the next 10 years.

 

Men's football: Joao Felix

A €126m move from Benfica to Atletico Madrid made Joao Felix the second most expensive teenager in football history. His career in LaLiga is yet to truly ignite but the forward's lavish gifts are beyond doubt as he faces up to the decade when Cristiano Ronaldo will leave the stage for their native Portugal. Joao Felix is the anointed heir.

Basketball: Luka Doncic

The 2018 EuroLeague MVP and 2019 NBA Rookie of the Year, Doncic's incredible rise has continued unchecked this season – he is averaging 28.8 points, 9.5 rebounds and 9.0 assists for the Dallas Mavericks. He should earn a first All-Star appearance this season and make his bow in the playoffs, where you would expect to see him featuring regularly in the coming years.

Cricket: Prithvi Shaw

Opening batsman Shaw became the youngest Indian to score a Test hundred on debut in 2018 and followed that up with a half-century in his second appearance. However, last year was one to forget for Shaw, who had injury problems before serving a six-month doping ban having taken a substance typically found in cough syrups. A first-class double hundred last month suggests he is ready to make up for lost time.

Tennis: Marketa Vondrousova

Although she was unable to win a title on the WTA Tour in 2019, Vondrousova was the runner-up at the French Open – one of three final appearances last year – and having risen to 16th in the world rankings she looks set to break the top 10 soon. The Czech's unorthodox playing style and penchant for drop shots makes her a particularly entertaining watch.

Formula One: Lando Norris

Norris enjoyed an excellent debut season in Formula One, helping McLaren to an impressive fourth place in the constructors' championship. After landing three straight points finishes to end the year, he carries momentum into 2020 and looks capable of challenging Charles Leclerc and Max Verstappen over the next 10 years.

UFC: Chase Hooper

Featherweight Hooper was awarded a development deal after winning the second season of Dana White's Tuesday Night Contender Series in 2018 and is the youngest fighter on the UFC roster. He improved his unbeaten mixed martial arts record to 8-0-1 by stopping David Teymur in the first round of a thoroughly impressive UFC debut in December.

American football: Trevor Lawrence

The NFL is blessed with talented young quarterbacks like Patrick Mahomes, Lamar Jackson and Deshaun Watson, but the potential star of the 2020s will not enter the league until 2021 at the earliest. Clemson's Lawrence possess the size, skill and nerve to succeed at the next level. He is still yet to lose a game in college and is one win away from back-to-back National Championships.

Sport climbing: Janja Garnbret

Sport climbing will make its Olympic debut at Tokyo 2020 and Garnbret is a favourite for success. She successfully defended her bouldering and combined titles at last year's world championships and added gold in the lead discipline. The Slovenian's tally of 14 International Federation of Sport Climbing titles is unprecedented.

Rugby league: Tom Flegler

Front-rower Flegler enjoyed a hugely promising breakthrough year with Brisbane Broncos in 2019, featuring 23 times in his maiden campaign. He has reportedly knocked back a host of lucrative offers to remain with Brisbane in 2020 and will now aim to make an even bigger impact.

Women's football: Georgia Stanway

Vastly experienced for her age, Stanway joined Manchester City from Blackburn Rovers and made her Women's Super League debut at 16 in 2015. She won her second FA Cup with a goalscoring player-of-the-match display as City beat West Ham 3-0 in 2019's Wembley final and was the youngest member of an England squad Phil Neville led to the World Cup semi-finals. If the Lionesses are to take the next step over the coming decade, expect Stanway to play a vital role.

Rugby union: Marcus Smith

Harlequins fly-half Smith is knocking on the door for full England selection after an impressive first two years of his club career. He was man of the match in last July's win over Barbarians, which fans of Eddie Jones' side will hope is a sign of things to come over the next decade.

Golf: Matthew Wolff

The PGA Tour welcomed a host of talented rookies in 2019, but Wolff may just be the best of the bunch. A standout college player with an unorthodox swing that generates enormous power, he won last July's 3M Open in only his third professional start.

MotoGP: Fabio Quartararo

After Jorge Lorenzo, the only man to defeat Marc Marquez in a MotoGP world championship, retired, and with Valentino Rossi nearing the end of his career, fans are looking to the next generation. That group looks set to be led by Quartararo, who will ride a factory-spec Yamaha for 2020 after claiming six pole positions and seven podiums in a magnificent rookie season.

Golf: Nasa Hataoka

Already fifth in the women's world rankings, Hataoka has claimed three LPGA Tour titles in the past 18 months, after becoming the first amateur to win a major on the Japan LPGA Tour back in 2016.

Baseball: Vladimir Guerrero Jnr

Guerrero has a lot to live up to but has already shown enough to suggest he may follow his father into baseball's Hall of Fame. Having signed for the Toronto Blue Jays as a free agent in 2015, Guerrero served his time in the minors before making his debut in the Major Leagues last April. He spent the rest of his maiden season displaying the kind of power that has marked him out as a star of the future, hitting .272, mashing 15 home runs and knocking in 69 RBI. By the end of the next decade, his may well be the face of baseball.

Ice Hockey: Quinn Hughes

Hughes, who could not even debut for the Vancouver Canucks until he recovered from an ankle injury in March, is an elite defenseman who also sat top of the rookie assist chart in late December.

Swimming: Michael Andrew

This year is an Olympic one and for the first time since the 1996 Games, Michael Phelps will not be in the pool. The United States needs a new swimming hero, and the hope is that Phelps' namesake can be the next star. Andrew was the youngest US swimmer to ever turn professional when he did so at 14 and, having finished fourth in the 50 metres butterfly at the 2019 World Aquatics Championships, he appears primed to be a breakout star in Tokyo.

Tennis: Denis Shapovalov

Shapovalov finished 2019 at a career-high ATP ranking of 15th, having won his first title in Stockholm. Expect his threat at the 2020 majors to be very real.

Athletics: Sydney McLaughlin

At the 2019 World Athletics Championships in Doha, gold in the 4x400 metres relay followed silver in the 400m hurdles for McLaughlin. Only a Dalilah Muhammad world record was enough to deny her the victory.

Boxing: Joseph Adorno

Currently plying his trade in the lightweight division, Adorno was brought up in Puerto Rico and his thunderous left hook has drawn comparisons to Miguel Cotto – the great four-weight world champion hailing from that boxing-mad island. Promoters Top Rank will look to step up Adorno's level of opposition in 2020, although anyone climbing into the corner opposite a young man boasting a 14-0 record with 12 knockouts should make sure they get well paid.

UFC president Dana White thinks it is "a bad idea" for Conor McGregor to chase a fight with Jorge Masvidal.

McGregor will make his return to the octagon after over a year away when he takes on Donald Cerrone at welterweight at UFC 246 on January 18.

Announcing his comeback in October, the Irishman said he wanted to fight the victor of Masvidal's UFC 244 bout with Nate Diaz – which the former won with a third-round TKO – before a rematch with lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov to close his 2020 season.

However, White has urged McGregor to reconsider his desire to take on Masvidal.

"I think it's a bad idea, but Conor gets p****d off when I say it is a bad idea. He's like, 'You think I can't beat Masvidal?', and that whole thing," White told ESPN.

"I'm not saying that you can't beat Masvidal, anybody can beat anybody on any given day, but why? Why go after that fight when you could possibly just wait?

"This is the reason that Conor McGregor is so intriguing and why so many fans love to watch him fight. And you've got to love the fact that a guy is willing to fight anybody.

"I've said this a million times, I'll say it again, I've been in the trenches and when we're standing in the living room and fights pull out, Conor McGregor will fight anybody."

Masvidal's victory over Diaz earned him the new BMF title, which White thinks is behind McGregor's desire for the bout.

"Conor wants that belt from Masvidal," said White. "I did it as a one-off, it was fun, it was awesome. We'll see what happens."

Saul 'Canelo' Alvarez would be open to the possibility of boxing against UFC star Jorge Masvidal in a blockbuster crossover bout.

Four-weight world champion Canelo was called out by Masvidal after 'Gamebred' defeated Nate Diaz at UFC 244 early in November.

After initially rebuffing the call out, Canelo was more open to the suggestion when presented the idea by TMZ.

"For business? Why not," he replied when asked about fighting Masvidal, who has seen his stock rise in MMA circles after notable wins over Darren Till, Ben Askren and Diaz in 2019.

Pressed if it could be his next fight, Canelo replied simply: "We'll see, we'll see."

Canelo, who defeated Sergey Kovalev on the same night as Masvidal beat Diaz, also reiterated his desire for a rematch with Floyd Mayweather Jr.

The Mexican was comfortably defeated via mixed decision – with one judge controversially scoring the fight a draw – back in September 2013.

Canelo is sure of a different outcome should the two mix it again, though the 29-year-old doubts the fight will happen.

"It's a fight I'd definitely like, it's a different time now, I was very young and inexperienced at the time," he added. 

"I'm a different fighter. It'd be a totally different result. But I don't think it will happen."

Colby Covington hit out at a "fake stoppage" by referee Marc Goddard after he fell to a fifth-round defeat to Kamaru Usman in the main event at UFC 245.

Usman retained his welterweight title in Las Vegas after a series of brutal shots in the final round, Goddard stepping in to call a halt to proceedings with Covington sent to the canvas as the Nigerian continued to aim strikes at his head.

Covington suffered a broken jaw but was angered by Goddard's decision and took to social media to air his frustration.

In a post on Twitter, former interim champion Covington wrote: "Normally people do their f****** in the bedroom, not the octagon @marcgoddard_uk!

"I go in there to kill or be killed. You robbed me of that. You robbed the people of a fair fight. You should be ashamed of yourself. Fake nut shot. Fake eye poke. Fake stoppage. Fake ref."

The build-up to the bout was marked by a bitter war of words between Covington and Usman, who is on a 15-fight winning streak.

Usman, now 16-1 in his UFC career, said in his post-fight interview: "I heard all week, all month since the fight got signed, 'Colby's in his head, Colby's this, Colby's that'.

"The reason I'm the best in the world is because my mind is stronger than everyone in the division.

"I give him his props, he was tough as nails, he caught me a few times but my mind is stronger than all these guys, I can prevail. I keep marching forward."

A packed card saw Max Holloway lose his featherweight title to Alexander Volkanovski, while Amanda Nunes retained her bantamweight belt with victory over Germaine de Randamie.

UFC legends Jose Aldo and Urijah Faber each lost bantamweight bouts to Marlon Moraes and Peter Yan respectively.

Khabib Nurmagomedov has ruled out a rematch with Conor McGregor unless the Irishman sheds weight after a "minor league" fight with Donald Cerrone.

McGregor will step up to welterweight to make his UFC comeback against Cerrone at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on January 18.

Former two-weight UFC champion McGregor has not fought since he was beaten by Khabib in a lightweight title bout at UFC 229 in October 2018.

Khabib is due to defend his title against Tony Ferguson at UFC 249 on April 18 and the Russian says another showdown with McGregor is not on the cards, despite UFC boss Dana White suggesting otherwise.

"I think Cerrone has lost seven or eight of his last 10 fights and the other one [McGregor] is going into his fourth year with no victories," said Khabib.

"It’s like the minor leagues – it really doesn’t matter who wins there.

"I'm surprised that Dana White is saying that if Conor beats Cerrone and I beat Tony Ferguson that there will be a rematch. I decide who I fight next.

"To fight me he has to cut weight first, down to 70kg, and then win 10 fights in a row like I did, then we'll think about a rematch.

"But for now he can fight second-rate fighters who lose seven out of 10 fights at 77kg, but to think he deserves the lightweight belt… well I'm champion so that won't happen, don’t worry."

Conor McGregor's UFC comeback is close to being finalised, with Dana White confirming the Irishman is set to face Donald Cerrone in January.

McGregor, who has a record of 21-4, has not fought since he was defeated by Khabib Nurmagomedov in a lightweight title fight at UFC 229 in October 2018.

The defeat was the former champion's only UFC appearance since a November 2016 triumph over Eddie Alvarez, having faced Nate Diaz twice in the same year.

Now, the 31-year-old is set to return to the Octagon at UFC 246 on January 18 in Las Vegas, with White revealing a non-title welterweight fight with Cerrone – nicknamed 'Cowboy' – has been arranged.

"Conor has signed and Cowboy is ready to go," White told ESPN on Thursday.

Cerrone is coming off a knockout defeat to Justin Gaethje in September, and the 36-year-old previously urged McGregor to "sign the deal" which was on offer.

"I think it's gonna happen this time," Cerrone told TMZ Sports in October. "I really do. Conor's really serious about making a comeback.

"Both teams have reached out and are trying to figure it out, it's looking good though. This would be a huge fight, I don't understand why his team wouldn't want to be engaged.

"It's gonna be a fun fight! He's a great fighter. I'm not taking anything away from him by any means, he's got a lot of punching power and it should be a good time.

"Sign the damn deal, man, let's get this done!"

Floyd Mayweather Jr has announced he is coming of retirement in 2020 and will work with UFC president Dana White to deliver a "spectacular event".

The unbeaten five-weight world champion boxer caused a stir when he returned to the ring in 2017 to take on UFC star Conor McGregor in a blockbuster super welterweight bout in Las Vegas.

Having won that fight, Mayweather hung up his gloves once more – but the 42-year-old appears set for another comeback, if his Instagram posts are anything to go by.

In one post, Mayweather wrote alongside a picture of himself in boxing shorts with his hands taped: "Coming out of retirement in 2020."

In another, next to an image of him sitting with White, he added: "@danawhite and I working together again to bring the world another spectacular event in 2020."

Mayweather included 'boxing', 'UFC' and 'MMA' in his list of accompanying hashtags.

Although Mayweather has previously dismissed the idea of adding to his tally of 50 professional boxing fights, he has expressed a willingness to participate in money-spinning exhibition matches.

Tyson Fury said he would "smash" Dana White after the UFC president advised the former unified heavyweight champion not to consider moving into mixed martial arts.

Fury – who is expected to return to the ring in February to face Deontay Wilder in a rematch – has been taking on different sports over recent months.

Having appeared in WWE to wrestle Braun Strowman, Fury has also trained alongside UFC middleweight Darren Till.

The 31-year-old claimed to have spoken with Conor McGregor about training together, though White stated his belief Fury should stick to boxing.

"If Tyson Fury wants to fight in MMA, I've got a tonne of guys that would love to fight him," White told TMZ Sports.

"I just don’t know why. I can't wrap my head around why. Tyson Fury is a very marketable heavyweight, I believe he's one of the best in the world, he's an incredible fighter, and promoted the right way could be part of the three of four biggest fights in heavyweight history.

"So why come over here and get smashed when you can stay there? Tyson Fury your time is now. You’re the man in boxing. You’re one of the top four guys in the world in boxing. Why even think about coming over here?"

However, Fury, who acknowledged he only heard about White's comments through his father, dismissed White's claims.

"I didn’t see them, but my dad saw them and my dad's calling him out for it," Fury told iFL TV at his book signing in London on Wednesday.

"I'd smash him for free, so I'm not bothered. Listen, everyone's got their opinion.

"I've got no interest really, I don't care. I'd probably get smashed in a lot of things, but do I care? No."

Fury also suggested he and fellow British heavyweight boxer Dillian Whyte should take on two of UFC's best in a tag-team contest, after Stipe Miocic claimed he would relish a fight.

"I'll fight Stipe and Dillian Whyte can fight Francis Ngannou," Fury said. "I'm sure he’s up for that. Tag team, Britain versus MMA."

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