Despite losing to Robert Whittaker in a number one contender’s bout at UFC 213, Yoel Romero is determined to convince the UFC to let him fight current middleweight champion, Michael Bisping.
Romero has moved beyond the motivation of fighting Bisping for the 185-pound title, however, and is willing to fight ‘The Count’ in a non-title bout to teach him some respect.
During Romero’s interim championship bout against Whittaker – which he lost via unanimous decision – Bisping trashed the Cuban flag and threw it at ‘Soldier of God’s’ corner.
Romero, who has since returned to his home country of Cuba, is not willing to let Bisping’s actions slide and is desperately trying to convince Dana White to book a grudge match.
“He doesn’t respect my flag, he doesn’t respect me, and that’s not good,” Romero told Ariel Helwani on a recent edition of The MMA Hour, per Danny Segura of MMA Fighting. “He needs to fight me. Belt or no belt, he needs to fight me. I told Dana White to give me this guy, I want this guy. I know I lost my chance to fight for the belt, but if Whittaker can’t fight due to injury, then I’d say, ‘Dana, give me the guy whether it’s belt or no belt. I need to fight him because he needs to respect me.”
Romero retaliated by burning a picture of Bisping holding the Union Jack flag and went a step further by stamping all over the British flag in Cuba.
When asked about whether his actions were comparable to Bisping’s, Romero’s response was blunt and straight to the point.
“F*ck him, you know?” Romero said. “F*ck him, that’s it.
“Everywhere he stays, I go,” he continued. “When he goes to the press conference for the Jonny ‘Bones’ Jones and Daniel Cormier fight, I go. When he goes to UFC on FOX, I go, too. Wherever he stays, I go. I want to see his face every time. I will be his nightmare.”
Given that Whittaker sustained a serious injury at UFC 213 and is likely sidelined from competition until next year, Romero could very well secure a fight with Bisping if he continues to ramp up interest by trash talking the Brit.
“Yeah, because I want to return to training because I hear that Whittaker is injured and I want to know what’s going to happen,” Romero said. “I want to fight Bisping whether it’s for a belt or no belt because he doesn’t respect my country, my flag. Someone needs to close his mouth because he talks a lot and I never got payback. He needs to pay because this is not good. A fight is a fight, but you can’t talk shit about the country, about family because that’s a serious, serious thing.”
Despite his loss to ‘The Reaper’, Romero is still very much one of the most feared middleweights in the world and is still ranked in the top three.
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