Never before has the UFC made this big a push to hold events in Europe, but that changes this year. Having already announced shows in Ireland and Germany, officials have also finalized dates for their return trip to Sweden as well as a stop in Istanbul, Turkey for the first time ever. Garry Cook, the UFC's EMEA (Europe, Middle East, Africa) Executive VP, confirmed the news today with Fighters Only Magazine. The Stockholm card will be held on October 4th, while the Istanbul show will take place no November 22nd.
This is the 3rd year in a row that the Octagon has landed in Sweden. Both previous shows were on Fuel TV, with Alexander Gustafsson beating Thiago Silva in the 2012 main event, and Gegard Mousasi winning a decision over late replacement Ilir Latifi last year.
The UFC has never ventured into Turkey before, and the only fighter with a Turkish background on their roster is flyweight Alp Ozkilic. You can imagine that as they've done with other European and Asian nations in the past, they'll be signing some Turkish-based fighters very soon to fill up the show.
No broadcast information or time has been set, but these are the types of shows generally tailored for the UFC Fight Pass audience.
To recap, here's the confirmed list of Europe, Middle East, African (none here so far), and Asian fight cards the UFC is set to run over the next several months:
London, England - March 8th (Gustafsson vs. Manuwa)
Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates - April 11th (Nogueira vs. Nelson)
Berlin, Germany - May 31st
Dublin, Ireland - July 19th
Macau - August 23rd
Saitama, Japan - September 20th
Stockholm, Sweden - October 4th
Istanbul, Turkey - November 22nd