Peter Sobotta is back.
The 33-year-old German welterweight has not fought since March of 2018 where he suffered a third-round TKO loss to Leon Edwards. Since then, he was supposed to fight Alessio Di Chirico last September, but he was forced to pull out.
So, on UFC Fight Island 3, Sobotta will return to the Octagon to battle the always entertaining Alex Oliveira.
“The last injury wasn’t very serious, it was an infection in my elbow. I just had to take off like four weeks. We tried to make the fight on a later date but Alessio didn’t agree,” Sobotta said on Just Scrap Radio on BJPENN.com. “So, they gave him a new opponent. The next chance was at UFC London in March. They were trying to make a fight with Gunnar Nelson but the event got canceled. It was bad luck. I was out for two years but it was more reasons than the injury. In the two years, I became a father of two children and I own a big gym. So, we moved the gym to a different location and that took months to do. I wasn’t fighting but I was busy.”
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When Sobotta started to get calls from the UFC about his return fight, he didn’t expect it would be against Oliveira. He knows “Cowboy” is a fan-favorite so he is eager for the opportunity.
“I was very happy about the chance. A two-year break against such a great opponent, on Fight Island it was cool,” he said. “I know my hands will get dirty in this fight, it will be a tough fight. He comes to fight, it is everything I could ask for.”
Entering the fight, Oliveira is around a -160 favorite. Yet, the German welterweight isn’t paying any attention to that. Instead, he is just focused on the Brazilian where he knows how dangerous he is standing, but expects to be able to take him down and get a submission win.
“He is a high-level striker. He doesn’t have the cleanest technique but I’m pretty sure my grappling is superior to his. When I get the chance to take him down I will. I see a wild fight, especially in the first round, that is when he is the most dangerous,” Sobotta said. “I need to be careful, his hands are pretty low. He holds his hands on his hips which is easier to hit him but also harder to see his punches. Just clean straight boxing and whenever I get the chance to take him down, I will do it because his jiu-jitsu is one of his weaknesses. I think I could catch him in the first or second round with a good submission.”
Not only is this Peter Sobotta’s return fight, but, it is also the final fight of his UFC contract. He admits if he loses and gets cut, it will probably be the end of his fighting career.
“This is the most important fight of my life. This is the last fight on my contract, after this fight my contract with the UFC ends. I’m 33 and I haven’t fought in over two years so this fight will decide my future in the UFC. It is is very big and a very important fight. If I do a good job and win this fight, I am sure I will get a new contract,” he explained. “But, if it doesn’t go my way, and I don’t get a new UFC contract, I will probably retire. I’ve been fighting professionally for over 15 years and my goal has been to a UFC fighter. If the UFC cuts me, that is probably it.”
So, for Sobotta, he knows this is his final run to the top of the division in the UFC. And, the German already has his eyes on his next two foes in Demian Maia and Gunnar Nelson.
“Right now, I am not in a position to choose opponents. After my fight, I have a list of guys. Number one is Demian Maia, number two is Gunnar Nelson. Those are my dream fights and after I win I will call them out,” he concluded. “Maia, I’ve always been a fan of him and for me to challenge my favorite fighter would be a great thing. With Gunnar, they say he is the best grappler in Europe and I want to show that I am the best.”
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