Former UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov has left life inside the octagon and diverted his focus to professional football. The Russian P4P king signed a contract with third-tier Russian football club FC Legion Dynamo, first reported by RT Sport.
Nurmagomedov left the UFC as one of the most dominant athletes the sport has seen, with finishes over Ireland’s Conor McGregor, Dustin Poirier, and Justin Gaethje. Ten months ago, the Russian superstar dismantled Justin Gaethje in Abu Dhabi, moving to 29-0. With the recent passing of his father Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov and right-hand man, Nurmagomedov decided to call it a day in the sport of MMA.
FC Legion Sign Khabib Nurmagomedov
FC Legion Dynamo, who play in the third division of Russian football and finished fourth in their league last season, announced the signing and posted a picture of club president Shamil Lakhiyalov with Nurmagomedov along with a caption that read:
“Our Legion is waiting for a great battle, for which we need great warriors. Getting ready to host the RPL team with Khabib Nurmagomedov.”
Earlier in the year, Khabib Nurmagomedov tweeted: “Preparing for my football debut. I’m a free agent and ready to accept offers.” This was followed by a Q&A where Nurmagomedov expressed his love for the sport of football.
“Football for me is like baseball. I watched this all the time when I was growing up like I remember watching the old Ronaldo, the Brazilian one before Cristiano.”
The thirty-two-year-old insisted that he captured the attention of many football clubs. However, he was not in the necessary shape to entertain those offers.
“A lot of football clubs, they offer me. But I have to, a little bit, become a football shape. Because football shape is a little bit different than MMA.”
Shamil Lakhiyalov on Signing Khabib
The idea occurred to Shamil Lakhiyalov to sign Russian sensation Nurmagomedov to FC Legion Dynamo when he would occasionally post videos of himself displaying his potential on the pitch. In a recent interview with RT Sports News, Shamil Lakhiyalov informed why he chose to sign to go through with it.
“I’ve had this idea of signing Khabib Nurmagomedov for a while. I took steps forward making it happen but couldn’t get it done. Then after Khabib’s Instagram post where he mentioned us. He said he needs us to motivate him. I immediately thought of offering him a contract, and that would motivate him to play his first pro game in his native republic, his hometown stadium Dynamo, since Khabib is Dagestan’s hero.”
Featured Image Credits to Getty Images