The last time Mirko ‘Cro Cop’ faced Gabriel Gonzaga his night ended as a victim of the same high kick that’s defined his career while also simultaneously missing out on a shot to fight for the UFC heavyweight title.
Now the two fighters will do it all over again.
The UFC announced on Friday that Cro Cop will return to the Octagon for the first time in three years to face Gonzaga in the main event of the promotion’s first ever card in Poland on April 11.
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Cro Cop just recently re-signed with the UFC following a 3-1 stint outside the organization after his exit in 2011. He’ll face Gonzaga, who is coming off back-to-back losses for the first time since 2010.
The first matchup from 2007 saw Cro Cop enter as a heavy favorite only to get knocked out with a vicious head kick courtesy of Gonzaga, which still counts as one of the biggest upsets and knockouts in MMA history. Cro Cop will get his chance for revenge when he faces Gonzaga for the second time when the heavyweight combatants meet in Poland.
The second fight announced for the card in Poland will see local favorite Jan Blachowicz fresh of his first UFC fight and win take on British striker Jimi Manuwa in the co-main event from the Krakow Arena.
Also announced on Friday were two more European events, which like the card in Poland will air on the UFC’s digital streaming service, Fight Pass.
The UFC will return to Germany for a card on June 20 at the O2 World in Berlin while a summer stop in Scotland for the first time ever will happen on July 18 from the SSE Hydro in Glasgow.
"We are wholly committed to the growth of mixed martial arts in these regions," said David Allen, Senior Vice President and General Manager for the UFC in Europe. "And we understand that in order to facilitate and drive this growth, we need to reach new markets and actively explore new territories.
"2015 is about bringing fans closer to the sport they follow so fervently and to the athletes that they support so passionately. This year, we will host events that will be remembered for years to come, and we intend to place cities like KrakÃ³w, Glasgow and Berlin firmly on the map when it comes to the sport of mixed martial arts."