What next for Darren Till following his shock KO loss to Jorge Masvidal at UFC London?

Tony Mogan

Darren Till’s hopes of getting another shot at the welterweight championship in 2019 have taken a major hit following his knockout loss to Jorge Masvidal at UFC London.

Till, 26, suffered the first defeat of his career when he challenged Tyron Woodley for the belt last September and had hoped to spark another world title tilt at the O2 Arena on Saturday.

But a shock KO in the second round that silenced the London crowd leaves his position in the division uncertain.

At 34, Masvidal will hope the victory brings him into the welterweight world title picture, currently ruled by Kamaru Usman who took the belt from Woodley in early March.

But what next for Till?

Leon Edwards?

Till and fellow English welterweight Edwards verbally sparred throughout the build-up to UFC London.

During a fight press conference in January, the two were so focused on throwing barbs at each other it prompted Masvidal to request the WiFi password from reporters in attendance to keep himself occupied while the other two went at it.

Edwards defeated Gunnar Nelson at the O2 on Saturday. (PA)

Edwards secured a hugely impressive split decision victory over Gunnar Nelson on Saturday night, insisting his next move would be to take on the winner of Till vs Masvidal.

The plot thickened when Masvidal and Edwards were involved in a backstage incident following the former’s second round stoppage of Till. The 34-year-old was giving an interview with ESPN backstage when Edwards approached off-camera.

Masvidal walked over to confront him, seemingly calm, but after exchanging words began launching blows at the Birmingham fighter.

While Till and Edwards share enough animosity to build a compelling all-English rivalry, the latter looks certain to cross paths with Masvidal again at some point. “Now you’re f*****,” Edwards wrote on Instagram on Sunday.

“If security wasn’t there you wouldn’t have made it back to the US. I’ll see you soon.”

Ben Askren?

Askren has only been a UFC fighter for five months but he and Till have already developed some bad blood.

The two have repeatedly clashed on social media with the Liverpudlian making it known under no uncertain terms the cocky American is someone he simply will never get on with.

“He [Askren] definitely has got a right [to immediately challenge the welterweight’s best] but he just goes about it in the wrong way. He is just a w*****. A complete w*****. He’s not worth my time,” Till told Standard Sport.

“I am not holding a grudge, I just don’t like the way he disrespects people. I’m not a guy like that but he definitely is. He has got no morals.”

Askren was in attendance on Saturday night. (PA)

Former Bellator and ONE Championship champion Askren made the trip over for UFC London and watched on at the O2 wearing a t-shirt featuring a nickname Till has lovingly given him – ‘curly headed f***’.

Askren beat Robbie Lawler to get his first UFC win in early March – he and Till could remain on a collision course.

Robbie Lawler?

If the Askren fight is made to wait, the man ‘Funky’ beat earlier this month could be an interesting option.

Lawler’s defeat to Askren at UFC 235 was a controversial one, with Masvidal among those to suggest he was “gifted” the win by referee Herb Dean.

Askren and Lawler went to war at UFC 235. (Getty Images)

As it stands, however, Lawler has back-to-back defeats on his record following a unanimous decision defeat to Rafael dos Anjos in December 2017.

With Till also reeling from two defeats on the bounce, a meeting between the two could be the spark both men need.