While Chael Sonnen says he’s waiting for a contract for his rematch with Anderson Silva, the UFC has already booked him for a flight to Brazil.
According to UFC president Dana White, the long awaited rematch between UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva and rival Chael Sonnen will take place this summer in possibly the biggest event in MMA history.
White was in Calgary on Wednesday announcing a slew of new events for Canada, but also let one other bombshell out regarding the most highly anticipated rematch in UFC history.
“Think about this, the Chael Sonnen/Anderson Silva fight, I’m probably going to put my foot in my mouth again, and probably not supposed to be talking about this either, but I always do it so, this thing’s going to be in a soccer stadium in Rio,” White said.
“This thing’s going to have over 80,000 people are going to be at this event down there.”
While White didn’t go into specifics regarding the venue, the most likely landing spot appears to be the Estadio Olimpico Joao Havelange, also known as Engenhao.
The Engenhao will be a host stadium for the 2016 Summer Olympics, which will also land in Brazil, and for soccer matches generally holds around 45,000 people. The stadium is home to the Botafogo football club in Rio.
For the upcoming Olympic games, the stadium is expected to fit closer to 60,000 fans.
Some have speculated that the Maracana could be the stadium White was speaking about due to its immense size and ability to pack in over 80,000 fans, but the only problem is it’s currently closed for renovations until 2013.
While the numbers don’t match up with White’s estimations, even with nearly 60,000 fans, that will still break all previous records for the biggest event in UFC history. The current record stands with UFC 129 held in Toronto in 2011 with more than 55,000 fans packing into the Rogers Centre.
The card will likely take place on June 16 in Rio with Silva vs. Sonnen 2 headlining the show.