Last week, UFC president Dana White confirmed middleweight king Anderson Silva (Pictured) would defend his throne against Chael Sonnen at a massive stadium in Brazil. However, the venue’s exact location remained under lock and key … until today.
On Monday, the organization confirmed Engenhão Stadium (also known as, Joao Havelange) in Rio de Janeiro will host the June 23rd fiesta.
“This will be the biggest sporting event of the year” said UFC president Dana White. “Bigger than the NFL, the NBA, you name it – UFC 147 will be the biggest. The whole world wants to see this fight between Silva and Sonnen. We are broadcast in over 150 countries in 22 languages in half a billion homes. Wherever those fans are, they are going to be watching this fight.”
Engenhão holds approximately 47,000 capacity for soccer matches, but the UFC should be able to increase that number significantly by reconfiguring the arena to accommodate their Octagon. The final tally should threaten the promotion’s all-time attendance record of 55,724, which was set last April at UFC 129 inside Toronto’s Rogers Centre.
After manhandling Silva for nearly five complete rounds at UFC 117, Sonnen was abruptly submitted by “The Spider” with only 110 ticks remaining on the clock. Since the August 2010 defeat, Sonnen has been doing everything within his power to land a rematch – including insulting every Brazilian fighter within earshot.
In addition to the highly-anticipated sequel, the middleweight shootout between “The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil” coaches Wanderlei Silva and Vitor Belfort was also confirmed for the show.