Robert Whittaker has admitted that Israel Adesanya’s trash talk paid off prior to their middleweight title fight at UFC 243.

‘The Reaper’ was sensationally dethroned inside two rounds when he squared off against Adesanya at the Marvel Stadium in Melbourne, Australia in October 2019. ‘Stylebender’ badly wobbled Whittaker at the end of round one before closing the show in the second frame.

Whittaker has done well to work himself back into title contention since then. He has become the clear number one contender at middleweight with decision wins over Darren Till, Jared Cannonier and Kelvin Gastelum.

A rematch between Whittaker and Adesanya seems inevitable at this point but the former middleweight champion isn’t too keen to speak about his bitter rival.

“Let’s not talk too much about Israel because I think he’s a piece of sh*t,” Whittaker said on The Howie Games. “He’s just a sh*t person. A sh*t person. Ah, a piece of sh*t is too rough. Too harsh. He’s a sh*thead. There that sounds better. He’s a sh*thead. I don’t like him, he doesn’t like me. Two cats from two different paths that don’t get along.”

Whittaker says his hatred of Adesanya had a negative impact on him at UFC 243 and he admits to entering that fight in a “very emotional” state.

“It did, because the last fight I was kind of very emotional,” Whittaker said when asked if Adesanya’s trash talk paid off. “I was in a bad place for the sport itself, for my career. I got a bit emotional in that fight because I don’t like him very much and on top of everything else that was going on. Lost my cool. I wasn’t really fighting like I should fight, like I normally fight. Props to him, he got in my head. I just think he’s a sh*thead.” (Transcribed by MMA Mania)

Do you think Robert Whittaker can beat Israel Adesanya in a rematch?

A lifelong fight fan from Liverpool, England who has been covering mixed martial arts (MMA) and boxing for several years. Follow @JordanEllisUK on Twitter for all the latest fight news, views, interviews and live event coverage.