After UFC 301 TKO win, Alessandro Costa calls for ranked opponent: ‘I’ve proven that I’m at that level’

Alessandro Costa feels he’s among the top flyweights in the world, and he thinks it’s time to prove that to the UFC.

After stopping Kevin Borjas to win a $50,000 Performance of the Night bonus at UFC 301, Costa (14-4 MMA, 2-2 UFC) would like to get a step up in competition. After all, he saw his former rival Steve Erceg, whom Costa lost to in December in a close bout he took on 10 days notice, give a tough outing to the champion Alexandre Pantoja that same night in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Costa is confident he’s one of the world’s best and would like to prove that, ideally in August or late summer.

“I think by August I can be ready, and I think a top 15 would be good for me,” Costa told MMA Junkie in Spanish. “I think I’ve proven that I’m at that level. When I have a full camp, and I think I showed that this past Saturday, that I’m different.

“I’m a much different fighter with a full camp and I think I have the level to compete with the guys in the ranking. I think I deserve that opportunity. It’s also a chance for me to win and get in the rankings myself.”

Although Costa is 2-2 since joining the UFC in December 2022, but that record may be deceiving. His two losses came in on short notice against Erceg, who just for the title, and Amir Albazi, who’s regarded by many as the No. 1 contender today. Both of Costa’s wins have been finishes and have won Performance of the Night bonuses.

Costa doesn’t see the UFC flyweight title too far into his future. He hopes that this calendar year he gets the opportunities to prove that he’s a legit threat to the belt in the division.

“I know there’s a line, but I honestly don’t think I’m too far,” Costa said when asked about fighting for the title. “I don’t see it being too far with what happened with Steve, that was his fourth fight, and he already fought for the title. Also, just seeing how he did and knowing how I did against him, I don’t think I’m too far. That’s all I have in mind, (the belt). That’s why I say my steps in 2024 are going to be very important.”

Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie