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Leon Edwards: UFC champion targets Conor McGregor and Islam Makhachev in legacy-defining fights

UFC welterweight champion Leon Edwards fights Belal Muhammed in Manchester at UFC 304 on July 27, in the sport's return to the UK

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Welterweight champion Leon Edwards says the chance to fight Conor McGregor in the future would add to his 'greatness'

UFC welterweight champion Leon Edwards is targeting potential fights against Conor McGregor and Islam Makhachev.

Edwards will make a third defence of his title when he takes on Belal Muhammed in Manchester on July 27 in the main event of the UFC 304 card. The fight will be a rematch of their meeting in March 2021 which ended in a no-contest, following a poke to the eye in the second round left Muhammad unable to continue.

The 32-year-old claimed the welterweight championship in 2022 in a rematch against the then-champion Kamaru Usman. Edwards knocked the Nigerian out in sensational fashion to become the first British UFC champion since Michael Bisping in 2016 and only the second in history.

McGregor will make a long-awaited return to the Octagon on June 29 in the main event of UFC 303 against Michael Chandler in Las Vegas. For Edwards, a win for McGregor will set up a potential headline Madison Square Garden bout between himself and the former lightweight champion.

Leon Edwards
Image: Edwards wants blockbuster fights against McGregor and Islam Makhachev

"To add McGregor to the list of opponents that I've defeated would add to my greatness," Edwards told Sky Sports News.

"That's a great fight for the audience, it's a fight that would get everyone talking. It would be entertaining. To give him the chance to win a third belt would be brilliant. To get McGregor and to headline at an iconic venue like Maddison Square Garden would be brilliant.

"I think I'm the better fighter, I'd be the bigger guy in there. It would be a great fight."

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It has been three years since McGregor last fought in the UFC after breaking his left leg in the first round of his trilogy fight with Dustin Poirier. Edwards believes McGregor will return with a victory.

"I can see a victory for Conor in a lot of ways. He's a great puncher, Chandler's aggressive, smaller than Conor so I'd favour Conor to win the fight."

McGregor isn't the only showdown that Edwards has on his mind with MMA fans anticipating a super fight with Makhachev.

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Edwards discusses the potential of a super fight showdown against lightweight champion Makhachev

Makhachev defeated Poirier in his latest lightweight title defence at UFC 302 on Saturday but has known desires to become a two-weight champion hinting at an eventual move to welterweight to fight Edwards.

"I'd welcome it but I think we both have work to do within our divisions," Edwards said.

"He just fought his first lightweight. I feel like he's got a few more lightweights he's got to go through first before even thinking about moving up.

"It's a massive fight. I feel like I've got work to do within my division first, then the super fights will come."

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