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Friday 2 December 2016

The Notorious warns Aldo: You're next on my hit list

CHALLENGE

CHAMPION Conor McGregor is eyeing up a huge Croke Park homecoming next year.

Fresh plans are being drawn up for the most anticipated fight in UFC history after McGregor won the interim featherweight world title in Las Vegas in the early hours of Sunday morning.

UFC CEO Lorenzo Fertita said that the grudge match between the Dubliner and Jose Aldo would "probably" now take place on January 2 in Las Vegas, but that nothing was "set in stone".

Speaking at a post-fight press conference, McGregor said he intended to make a Dublin event happen.

"The stadium show in Dublin will happen... make no mistake about that," he said.

UFC president Dana White has previously pledged that McGregor's first title defence would be held on home soil.

The Crumlin-born fighter threw down the gauntlet to the Brazilian following his second round knockout victory over Chad Mendes in front of 11,000 Irish fans in the MGM Grand.

"In my opinion, Jose went running," McGregor said.

"I had bigger injuries in the lead-up to this fight than that bruised rib and I still showed up here and performed.

"If he wants to come back, he can come back but I swear to God, his day will come," he said.

His family joined the legion of Irish fans who travelled to Nevada to watch him claim the interim title.

party

In an emotional after-match moment his mum Margaret kissed her son proudly on the forehead.

Despite emerging bloodied from the ring, the 27-year-old turned up at his after-party in a suave dark suit showing no ill-effects from the gruelling match.

His girlfriend Dee Devlin wowed in a peach dress in the Foxtail nightclub in the SLS Hotel on the Vegas strip.

This morning Dee proudly posted a photo of two new Audemars Piguet watches with the caption "his n hers". The watches are valued in excess of €50,000 each (inset left).

Last night Dee said she couldn't be any prouder of Conor.

"To say that I am proud is a major understatement! I am so on cloud 9 right now," she posted online.

"Thank you to every single person who made the trip out to Vegas to support Conor. The place was absolutely buzzin! And to all of the fans at home who also had a big part to play in making this event so special.

"Hours upon hours, years upon years of hard work and complete dedication to his craft accumulated last night. I am so grateful right now it's overwhelming. We did it babe!! I love you more than anything."

McGregor said he was "blown apart" by the support from his home fans - 11,000 of whom packed out the historic venue.

McGregor is set to rake in a significant six-figure sum for the fight. On top of his prize money of around €450,000, the MMA hero will also see a cut of the ticket sales and also a portion of the pay-per-view earnings.

The betting industry also suffered a €1m after McGregor was heavily backed by Irish fans.

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