Mixed martial artists with a proven track record of knocking opponents out will always be in demand. Roberto Soldic was not short of offers when his contract with Polish promotion KSW expired.

But opponents will always look to take you down if they are intimidated by your striking. It is something Soldic has been dealing with for virtually his entire career and the Croatian, who makes his ONE Championship debut this weekend, says his wresting is underrated,

“People think I don’t train wrestling because I finished my fights in the stand-up, but I’ve done wrestling every day for ten years.”


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Difficult matchups

He takes on wrestler Murad Ramazanov at ONE on Prime Video 5. The Russian is undefeated but Soldic says that, at this stage of his career, he is only going to be handed difficult matchups,

“Straight away, I get the most dangerous wrestler and MMA fighter, Murad Ramazanov. I have never chosen any opponent. Just send a contract, and I will sign it. It doesn’t matter who he is.”

Soldic will be making his ONE Championship debut but his opponent has already established himself as one of the promotion’s top welterweights. It sounds like the Croatian has been following his career closely,

“Ramazanov is 11-0 overall, 3-0 in ONE Championship. It’s good for me. I don’t want to take easy fights. I want good fights so that people can see I’m different, and I will try to show it again in ONE Championship, on the world stage. It’s not going to be easy, and that’s why I’m here.”


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Detailed breakdown

He gives a detailed breakdown of his opponent’s skillset and it doesn’t sound like Soldic is too concerned about Ramazanov’s striking,

“(He) is good in the wrestling, really good control, like every Dagestan fighter. He has a good single-leg, switching to the body lock. He has good conditioning. His stand-up is okay.”

Soldic has been facing some of the best welterweights and middleweights in Europe and sounds very confident ahead of a bout that has all the makings of a title eliminator,

“I think I have more experience than him, and I’ve had the tougher fights. I had better opponents. But I never had underestimate anyone.”


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Something different

There is no bad blood between these two Europeans. But Soldic thinks his opponent will be completely out of his depth,

“I respect him a lot, but I can say that he’s never faced anybody like me. I’m something different. I’m southpaw. I’m a very dangerous guy.”

While fans will be looking for Soldic to demonstrate his KO power the Croatian says he might surprise everyone, including his opponent, by pulling out a submission on Saturday,

“People expect always KOs from me because most of my fights were finished by KO, so I guess I could surprise with a submission – I also have good jiu-jitsu.”