Yoel Romero will now face Alex Polizzi at Bellator 280 following the late withdrawal of his original opponent, Melvin Manhoef.
The light heavyweight bout was initially reported by Dutch outlet Redactie Telesport. It will feature as the co-main event of Bellator 280, which will take place on May 6 at AccorHotels Arena in Paris.
Rising light heavyweight Polizzi is stepping in on short notice due to an injury sustained by Romero’s original opponent, Manhoef. According to Redactie Telesport, Manhoef was injured while apprehending three alleged attempted burglars.
Polizzi will go into the bout riding a three-fight win streak. The 30-year-old has lost just once since making his Bellator debut in 2020. In March this year, Polizzi defeated Jose Augusto Azevedo via rear-naked choke, and in September 2021, earned a split-decision win over Grant Neal.
Meanwhile, Romero will be attempting to achieve his first win in Bellator. The 43-year-old lost to Phil Davis via split decision in his promotional debut in September last year. Romero is now riding a four-fight losing streak, having previously lost to Israel Adesanya, Paulo Costa, and Robert Whittaker as a UFC middleweight.
With the change to the co-main event, the Bellator 280 lineup now includes:
Ryan Bader vs. Cheick Kongo
Yoel Romero vs Alex Polizzi
Lorenz Larkin vs. Kyle Stewart
Davion Franklin vs. TBA
Soren Bak vs. Charlie Leary
Gavin Hughes vs. Yves Landu
Pedro Carvalho vs. Piotr Niedzielski
Gregory Babene vs. Mike Shipman
Thibault Gouti vs. Lewis Long
Fabacary Diatta def. Jordan Barton
Joel Kouadja vs. Nicolo Solli
Lucie Bertaud vs. Katarzyna Sadura
Bourama Camara vs. Victor Verchere
Mathieu Ducios vs. Youcef Ouabbas
Who do you think will have their hand raised at Bellator 280, Yoel Romero or Alex Polizzi?