With the UFC returning to London next week, one prominent English fighter is missing: No. 5 ranked featherweight Arnold Allen.
The 28-year-old is coming off the biggest win of his career when he stopped Dan Hooker in March. Allen wanted to turn back around, but unfortunately, he has been dealing with some hand injuries.
In a recent interview with Michael Bisping, Allen explained his injury.
“Yeah, so I had a break in my left hand after the Sodiq [Yusuff] fight. So, I had a long time off from that one, and the doctor didn’t want to operate on it or whatever. So we just waited, waited, and waited. I kept trying to come back to training sooner and injured it again,” Allen said. “From the Hooker fight, I had injuries in both hands – It was tendons. I had two cortisone shots in the right hand and then one in the left hand. And it’s just, every time I pick up the training and get back in, something goes again. So slowly but surely.”
Allen has only fought once a year the last few years, but he believes he will return to action this year.
“Definitely this year. I’m optimistic for this year. And I’m getting to the point where I’m getting older, getting to that point where it’s like, you’re young, you’ve got time, but it’s getting to the point where it’s like, I ain’t gonna be too much younger too long,” Allen said.
After his win in March, Allen called out Calvin Kattar, but due to being injured, Kattar went on to face Josh Emmett in the main event of UFC Austin. ‘Almighty’ hopes to fight Kattar when he returns because it makes sense ranking-wise.
“Yeah, [in a perfect world I’d face Kattar] you know to be fair, kind of thought he won the last fight. It was a good fight. It was like it wasn’t a robbery in any stretch. I had him up on the cards and winning on scorecards but yeah, it was tight. It wasn’t a robbery or anything like that,” Allen said. “I always say when I get to this position and it makes sense to call someone out. I will call someone out. I called Kattar out because I thought that made sense for the next step and he was above me.”
With Kattar coming off a hard fight with Emmett, a date with Allen at the end of the year makes sense.