History, arts and food will always be associated with the rich culture of Italy. But few who lived outside Europe they knew that sport in the country has a long tradition.
As in most European nations, soccer is very popular in Italy. The national team has won the World Cup of the FIFA on four different occasions, the most recent in 2006.
Auto racing, meanwhile, comes in a close second with many Italian engineers and drivers contributing a lot to the sport.
When it comes to combat sports, Italy has produced a handful of notable names such as the fencer Edoardo Mangiarotti and the professional wrestler Bruno Sammartino.
But when it comes to mixed martial arts (MMA), has not yet become popular. All of that could change on August 1 when BRAVE Combat Federation make your first foray onto Italian soil.
The team based in Bahrain will host BRAVE CF 52: Bad Blood in the beautiful city of Milan, with a World Light Heavyweight Championship clash between the middleweight champion Mohammad “The Latest” Fakhreddine and Mohamed “L’Ambiance” Said Maalem.
It is a welcome development for The Golden Cage, a local MMA promo that has been spearheading the sport’s rise from obscurity in the country since 2017.
It has been an uphill climb for the Italian scene of MMA. Despite producing high-caliber competitors such as Marvin Vettori, Alessio Sakara and Alessio Di Chirico, it still does little to keep many talents from leaving home to seek greener pastures, as opportunities range from low to none.
Eager to wear the MMA at higher altitudes in Italy, The Golden Cage found an ally in BRAVE CF, an organization that has performed 51 shows in 22 different countries, seven of which are European nations such as Northern Ireland, England, Sweden, Russia and Slovenia, Romania and Belarus.
“We have visited so many countries throughout our journey to help facilitate a global ecosystem for MMA. Our goal, in addition to national sports development, is also to bring a positive change to MMA that will make the best talents from each country become global stars, talent being the only variable “, declared the president of BRAVE CF, Mohammed Shahid.