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Five fights into her UFC career, McCann has established herself as a fan-favorite, all-action fighter who embraces the spirit of her hometown of Liverpool. After dropping her debut, she rattled off three wins in 2019 and landed in the Top 15. But the COVID-19 pandemic scrapped her scheduled bout against Ashlee Evans-Smith in London, and a few months later, she found herself on the wrong end of a unanimous decision against Taila Santos.

“I was in prime condition, so when I lost, it was tough to take,” McCann said. “But, when you know you’ve given your best – until that clapper went, I was still going. I’m proud of my performance – if you can go and walk down the street and people in your hometown, even after a loss, are shouting, ‘Go on, Meatball. Next time,’ you know you’re doing something right.”

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In Procopio, McCann faces her fourth Brazilian in five UFC fights, something in which she finds both humor and enjoyment, imagining UFC matchmaker Mick Maynard putting the Scouser against hard-nosed Brazilians over and over again. McCann wouldn’t have it any other way, as her trio of wins over Priscila Cachoeira, Ariane Lipski and Romania’s Diana Belbita showed.

Coming off the loss to Santos, McCann noted her dislike of how Santos was able to outmuscle her against the cage (something Santos also did to Top 15 flyweight Gillian Robertson in her ensuing fight) and trained accordingly. She and her team at Next Generation MMA in Liverpool created a bubble in order to train for their respective fights, and just a few days away from fight night, McCann is certain she has put in the necessary work to find success.


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