Former welterweight champion Tyron Woodley has revealed his plan to take Brazilian submission specialist Gilbert Burns into the later rounds at UFC on ESPN 9 this weekend. Woodley exuded confidence while speaking with MMA Junkie ahead of his fight with Burns who he says has a good but limited fighting style.

“This fight in particular with Gilbert Burns is, I’m confident because of who I am and what I’m doing,” Woodley said. “I’m aware of what he does, I’m aware of how he is – he’s got a nice little left hook, uppercut, got some knees and flying knees, kicks and punches and calf kicks. I haven’t really seen much different from him. I’ve seen his style, and I’ve kind of gotten it broken down, but the element of surprise is a mother(expletive).”

After taking more than a year off from competition Woodley is ready to get back to championship level fights, starting with five, five minute rounds against Burns.

“When you start doing stuff they don’t expect you to do, that’s what I think he won’t be prepared for. He won’t be prepared to get exhausted and drained, and I wanted this. I had the option to fight this fight in a three-round fight, and I wanted a five-round fight because he ain’t never fought five rounds before, not in the UFC, not to my knowledge.”

Woodley believes his experience of going the full 25 minutes in his first three title defences will serve him well against Burns who he thinks will struggle to cope down the stretch.

“So three rounds, starting off strong or loafing in the beginning to finish strong is not going to work, is not going to work in a five-round fight,” Woodley said, “That’s what my goal is: Just take him in that deep water and just trying to drown him.”

Do you think Tyron Woodley will get back to winning ways against Gilbert Burns at UFC on ESPN 9?

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.