Joel Alvarez is convinced his home country is ready to host a UFC event.
The burgeoning UFC lightweight contender would love to see a UFC card drop in Spain. Alvarez (19-2 MMA, 4-1 UFC), from Gijon, Spain, believes there is a big enough fan base and support in the country to not only host an octagonal visit, but it would be a participation in success.
“There’s a lot of support now and a lot of fans,” Alvarez told MMA Junkie in Spanish. “I think it’s a good time for this coming year in 2022 for the UFC to come to Spain if possible.
“An event in Spain would be great to tell you the truth. I think it’s a good time. The fanbase is ready and I think they would sell out.
Spain currently has the strongest representation it has ever had in UFC history. Alvarez and Ilia Topuria, who are ranked contenders in their respective divisions, and “The Ultimate Fighter 28” winner Juan Espino carry the Spanish flag in the octagon.
The UFC has not hosted any international events outside of Abu Dhabi since the COVID-19 pandemic hit a global scale in March 2020. Alvarez is hoping things change for next year.
Either way, the 28-year-old will continue to work and climb the rankings wherever he fights next.
“Now we’re going to look for the jungle lions,” Alvarez said. “Hope to be back in March and get another fight. This way I take a little break and make a good camp for the fight. To be honest, I don’t have anyone in mind, but any of them will be a bad customer. Any of them would be a big fight. I am now in the top 15 of the best in the world.
Being outspoken, Alvarez admits he didn’t expect to thrive like he did in the UFC. He’s happy to now be in the official 155-pound rankings and is determined to do even more.
“To be honest, you wouldn’t imagine it going so well,” Alvarez said. “You’d expect to be there fighting with obstacles, but I’m now on a four-game winning streak with all four finishes – it was unimaginable to do something like that. And even more, having started with a loss. I think it even served me well this defeat, to mentalize myself on what to do.