Yoel Romero was focused on Melvin Manhoef, 205-pound Belt but is looking at middleweight returns: “I’m one of the greatest in the world at 185′.”


Yoel Romero has aspirations to not just be the Bellator light heavyweight champion but also to capture the middleweight title.

Romero will be back in action against Melvin Manhoef on Friday at Bellator Dublin’s co-main event. After dropping his promotional debut to Phil Davis at Bellator 266, Romero got back to form with a dominant performance against Alex Polizzi at May’s Bellator 280 event, where he finished his opponent with a jaw-breaking flurry at the 4:59 mark of the final round.

For the 45-year-old Romero, that was just the start of what he believes to be a historic run.

“My goals are to the champion at 185 and 205,” he told MMA Fighting. That’s all I have in my hands and that’s what I’m trying to achieve.

” I’m the best at 185. I’m eager to come back to that division, and it’s my first love. This is the division that started everything, and I couldn’t resist fighting in it. But at the same time, the focus has to be on Melvin. I have to look after business at 205,, and I will be happy to return to 185, when it is time. .”

Not just was Romero his first win in Bellator but also his first since stopping Luke Rockhold in UFC February , a performance which snapped an eight-fight streak. The win wasn’t just redemption, but he also felt he owed the fans that have supported him.

” I feel that what I did in Paris was to pay off a debt I owed the fans following the Davis fight. I felt like there was more I could give,” Romero stated. “In the end, in Paris, it was important to redeem myself in that way.”

Romero couldn’t savor his win for long, though, as the fight with Manhoef was announced almost immediately afterward. Manhoef could end his distinguished combat sports career with a fight against the multiple-time UFC champion.

Romero will not feel remorseful or regret if Manhoef is sent to retirement without a loss.

” I don’t worry about what might, or should not, nor the what-ifs,” Romero said. Romero said, “If there is a plate of food in front me at a restaurant I will eat it.” This is the short and simple version.

” It is exactly what it is. It happens if I retire him. It doesn’t matter what happens to him, all I care about it is moving up towards bigger and more important goals. Keep climbing those steps toward the goals I desire. Whatever happens to him, it happens.”