Khabib Nurmagomedov issues Conor McGregor with ultimatum after Dana White talks

Khabib Nurmagomedov has told Conor McGregor: Impress me if  you want a rematch.

The UFC lightweight champion has confirmed he is willing to come out of his short-lived retirement – if he is dazzled by next weekend's clash between McGregor and Dustin Poirier.

Nurmagomedov had announced he was quitting following his win over Justin Gaethje last October.

But he did not vacate his title and held talks with the promotion's president Dana White in Abu Dhabi on Friday night.

The pair met at the host hotel before heading to the UAE Warriors 15 event later in the evening where an episode of Dana White: Lookin' for a Fight was being filmed.

And White said: "I thought he made an emotional decision; there was no need to make a hasty decision when we didn't need to.

"I talked to him and I told him to take his time and we would get together later on, and last night we did.

"The way he feels right now is he's accomplished all he wanted to accomplish but he thought [Charles] Oliveira looked good in his last fight against Tony Ferguson.

"And next Saturday we have McGregor vs Poirier and [Dan] Hooker vs [Michael] Chandler so his words to me were, 'I would never tie up the division and hold the belt away from anyone else. These guys have to do something spectacular and make me want to come back'.

"I have a feeling if someone delivers – it could be in the co-main event or the main event – if these guys can do something special, Khabib will fight them."

Nurmagomedov had vowed he would not continue without his father Abdulmanap who passed away last year after contracting Covid-19.

He fulfilled his commitment to fight Gaethje and retained his title with a third-round submission before revealing his next move.

White had hoped he could lure his champion back into the Octagon – and he may well be proved right.

Nurmagomedov choked out McGregor in 2018 to successfully defend his lightweight title but their bitter feud has simmered since.

The Irishman was out of the cage for 15 months following the loss but returned with a 40-second stoppage of Donald Cerrone last January.

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