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Dublin: 14°C Thursday 29 October 2020
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Jose Aldo gives Aisling Daly's opponent advice on dealing with the Irish crowd

Ericka Almeida has left Brazil for the very first time to compete at UFC Dublin this weekend.

Almeida Aldo Almeida and (right) Jose Aldo. Source: Instagram/Ericka Almeida

“I WAS EXPECTING it to be colder actually!” smiles Brazilian MMA fighter Ericka Almeida.

“The weather has been nice and I’m really liking the town.”

Not only is it the 26-year-old’s first visit to Ireland, it is in fact her first time to travel outside her homeland.

After suffering defeat to Juliana de Lima Carniero by decision in her UFC debut, Almeida (7-1-0) is hoping to claim a win inside the Octagon when she takes on Ireland’s Aisling Daly in a strawweight bout at the 3Arena on Saturday night.

The more experienced fighter of the two and one of SBG’s longest-serving members, Daly (15-6-0) will also be looking to put the recent loss to Randa Markos, at UFC 186, behind her.

When the franchise made its long-awaited return to Dublin in July 2014, Daly had to watch team-mates Conor McGregor, Paddy Holohan, Cathal Pendred and Gunnar Nelson take centre stage from Las Vegas as she was competing in TUF 20.

Jiu-jitsu specialist Almeida, who trains with Herman Gutierrez Team in Sao Paolo, has watched the series back and feels she is as ready as ever.

“My preparations were great and I’ve just had my best camp,” she said.

“I watched her in the TUF house and I know she’s a popular fighter. She likes to box and is a brown belt in jiu-jitsu like me, and she likes the ground game too. I’m also like that so I’m looking forward to the fight.”

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Almeida Daly

The last Brazilian UFC fighter to face the Dublin crowd was at the Aldo v McGregor World Tour back in March, when the featherweight champion was berated by fans at the Convention Centre.

Almeida, who received advice from her compatriot, insists she is prepared for a frosty reception but adds that Daly will be the one feeling the heat.

“I know she is team-mates with Conor McGregor, who is an idol, but I don’t feel pressure from the Irish crowd,” she said.

She is in her hometown in front of her team-mates, friends and the whole country, so she is the one who should be feeling pressure.

“I met Jose Aldo and he said the crowd are really supporting (of local fighters) but he told me not to worry as I am prepared to go there and do my job.”

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Ben Blake

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