(Photo - Jamie Lee Smith / DN4 Photography)

Ryan Scope Promises To ‘Go To War’ With ‘Pitbull’ At Bellator Newcastle

Bellator lightweight Ryan Scope says he and Patricky 'Pitbull' Freire will 'go to war' at Bellator Newcastle next year.

Bellator MMA officially announced yesterday that hometown man Ryan Scope will headline Bellator Newcastle on February 9 when he takes on Patricky “Pitbull” Freire at the Metro Radio Arena.

Scope last fought in December 2017 when he took UFC veteran Mickael Lebout in the headline bout of BAMMA 33. The Geordie went on to win the BAMMA lightweight title with a split decision win and was then expected to make his Bellator debut earlier this year at Bellator 200. Unfortunately for Scope, an injury to his scheduled opponent Martyn Harris put an end to his dream of making his Bellator debut in July, but next year he will now get the opportunity of a lifetime to take on one of Bellator most celebrated lightweights.

Speaking to MMANytt earlier this week, Scope spoke of his excitement to headline the first event in the new Bellator Europe Series and to face a big name like Pitbull.

“The last time out I wasn’t too pleased with the opponent,” Scope said. “I’ve always said I want the hard fights and someone really good and that’s exactly what I’ve got now. Pitbull has been in there with everyone and beaten everyone there is too beat.

“I think beating him is going to put me right at the top. I’ve not been told that it’s officially a title eliminator, but I think it would be hard to deny me a shot once I beat him. Pitbull has beaten the likes of John Thompson and Benson Henderson – so who else is there for him to beat?”

Scope’s last fight in BAMMA also saw him headline in the Metro Radio Arena and he has nothing but fond memories of the occasion. With Bellator bringing an even bigger fight card this time around, Scope thinks it will be an even bigger occasions.

“It’s always great fighting at home and driving to the arena,” Scope said. “Fighting in front of your own fans and having their support is amazing. I think this fight is going to be even so I think it’s going to be even more special.”

Whilst Scope hasn’t fought anyone the quality of Pitbull before, the Geordie is confident he will have more than enough to deal with him come fight night. Part of his confidence comes from having sparred the current Bellator lightweight champion Michael Chandler and more than held his own.

“I’ve always watched Pitbull and I’ve sparred with Mike Chandler five years ago and more than held my own so I know I’m on that level. Don’t get me wrong it was a long time ago, but when I was fresh I did well. I’m sure he’s improved and I’ve definitely improved.”

With tickets now on sale for the event, Scope is promising fans that they won’t be disappointed if they put their hands in their pockets before Christmas.

“I think Pitbull and I are going to have a good war. I know it’s going to be a good fight. We’re going to stand and trade and I’m confident I’ll be the one left standing,” Scope said.

“No one else would’ve dared take this fight but me so early on in my career. I truly believe I’ll get a title shot with a win, but even if they don’t I’m ready to earn my way to the title. My only thing is that I want to remain active. Give me enough fights and I’ll get that title.”

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