Former two-time title contender Yoel Romero is expected to make his return against upstart contender Paulo Costa at UFC 241 in Anaheim on Aug. 17.
Sources close to the middleweight contest confirmed the news on Tuesday with verbal agreements in place. ESPN initially reported the fight.
By the time Romero returns more than a year will have passed since his last fight when he came up short in his bid to become middleweight champion in a five round war with Robert Whittaker.
Romero was then matched up with Ronaldo ‘Jacare’ Souza in April but he came down with a mild case of pneumonia that knocked him out of the fight. Now that he’s healthy again, the Olympic silver medalist in wrestler will look to re-establish himself in the middleweight division while facing one of the fastest rising stars at 185 pounds.
Costa comes into the fight with a perfect 12-0 record including four wins in the UFC. The Brazilian slugger has won all of his UFC fights by first or second round knockout including victories against former champion Johny Hendricks and ‘Ultimate Fighter’ veteran Uriah Hall.
This will undoubtedly be Costa’s biggest step up in competition as he’s expected to face Romero at UFC 241.
The card in Anaheim will be headlined by a heavyweight title fight rematch as Daniel Cormier takes on former champion Stipe Miocic.