UFC 246 Conor McGregor vs 'Cowboy' Cerrone: What time is the fight, how can I watch and what is our prediction?

Telegraph Sport
Conor McGregor returns to the octagon in Las Vegas - Getty Images North America

What is it?

Conor McGregor headlines UFC 246 as he makes his eagerly anticipated return to the octagon against American Donald 'Cowboy' Cerrone. 

When is it?

The official date is Saturday, January 18 but due to the time difference it could be the early hours of Sunday, January 19 before fight fans in the UK and Ireland see McGregor in action. 

Where is it?

The T-Mobile Arena on the Las Vegas strip. 

What time will it start? 

There are 12 fights on the undercard so the main section of the evening may not start until 5am UK time, meaning an early alarm call if you want to watch live. 

How can I watch the fight?

BT Sport are broadcasting the event via their pay-per-view box office channel and it is expected to set UK viewers back £20 (price to be confirmed). The fight can be purchased by viewers who have a Sky, Virgin or BT TV subscription. If that does not apply to you, there is the option to set up a BT Sport Box Office online to watch on mobile, tablet, desktop or mobile. 

What is at stake?

Following his foray into boxing, McGregor was beaten by Khabib Nurmagomedov in October 2018 on his return to UFC and has not been back in the octagon since. Defeating Cerrone could give McGregor the chance to regain his UFC Lightweight title from Nurmagomedov in a rematch. 

What has been said?

McGregor's head coach John Kavanagh told The MacLife: 

“It’s a real return to smiling on the mat, enjoying it, having fun. And it’s cliche to say, but a happy fighter is a dangerous fighter.

“He just seems really happy with his life and his training and with the environment that we have here and competing again and having those exchanges and so on and so on.

"I think this is going to be the best he’s ever been.”

Betting on UFC 246? See the latest Conor McGregor vs Donald 'Cowboy' Cerrone odds and offers

What is our prediction?

Gareth A Davies, MMA Correspondent

I expect Conor McGregor to finish victorious against Donald Cerrone, given that 'Cowboy' is much weathered and generally favours the stand up form of fighting. However,  the Irishman has had just one MMA fight in the UFC since 2016 (the boxing match with Floyd Mayweather notwithstanding), and lost that to Nurmagomedov. If the fight does end up on the ground then things get very dangerous for McGregor: Cerrone is a jiu jitsu ace.

But I expect McGregor, if he really does have the hunger and appetite for the fight game mentally, physically and emotionally intact, to stop the American with his clever left hands and movement in the second round. Calm, aggressive, looking to finish. But this is really a hard prediction on the return for McGregor, with much swirling around him, and although wealthy beyond most fighter's imaginations, in something of redemption return, having been away so long from the UFC Octagon. 

If McGregor loses, it is tough to see where he heads in the next move after this on his fighting career path.