CLITHEROE’S Michael Bisping is eyeing a title shot against Anderson Silva if he can secure a convincing victory over Brian Stann at UFC 152 next month.
The 33-year-old was beaten by Chael Sonnen in a middleweight title eliminator in his last fight in January but returns to action against Stann in Toronto on September 22.
And Bisping is still one of a number of contenders to take on Silva for what would be his first career title shot.
Silva is due to fight again next year and he has been mentioned as a possible opponent along with Stann, Chris Weidman and Tim Boetsch.
So Bisping knows what he needs to do next month to secure the bout, having spoken to UFC matchmaker Joe Silva.
“We’ve had that conversation – I’ve got to perform,” Bisping said.
“I’ve got to put on a good win against Brian Stann.
“Going out there and scraping a decision by the skin of my teeth won’t cut it.
“I’ve got to go out there, I’ve got to beat him, I’m got to look good and I’ve got to fight.
“I'm going to put on the performance of my lifetime. Brian Stann ain’t no pushover.
“If I do that, I believe I will get a title shot.
“Stann’s a very dangerous fighter, very popular, he’s a big name and this is a big fight.
“It’ll attract a lot of attention and I feel it’s a good opponent to put me in title contention.
“That’s what I want. I want the fights that’ll grant me a title shot.
“I think Brian Stann is definitely a name that could do that, as long as I get a good win and I win impressively.”
Weidman is currently the favourite to face Silva but Bisping does not see what that is the case.
“I think I’m right up there,” he said.
“I think Chris Weidman, while being a fantastic fighter, still needs to generate a little more hype.
“You know, no-one really knows who he is.
“So, he needs some more big wins.
“I’ve been there in the UFC now for six years, fighting the best the UFC’s had to offer and I’m still here.
“I’ve got a stellar record and I want to fight the champ.
“Obviously I got to earn that right.”