'I was drunk': UFC star's startling confession about brutal loss

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  • Israel Adesanya
    Nigerian-born New Zealand kickboxer and mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter
Pictured here, Paulo Costa at the weigh-in for UFC 253.
Paulo Costa claims he was still drunk when he fought Israel Adesanya at UFC 253. Pic: Getty

Brazil's Paulo Costa has offered a startling excuse for his chastening defeat against Kiwi fighter Israel Adesanya at UFC 253 in September.

Costa went into the Abu Dhabi bout having never lost a fight in the UFC but middleweight champion Adesanya snapped his undefeated record in emphatic style.

The Kiwi delivered precision kick after kick before catching Costa in the second round with a powerful left hook that knocked the Brazilian down.

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'The Last Stylebender' quickly pounced and delivered several ground and pound punches before referee Jason Herzog stopped the fight.

Adesanya then sparked controversy with a vulgar post-fight celebration that left Costa fuming.

The Brazilian labelled the middleweight champ "human trash" and demanded to be afforded a rematch.

Now the 29-year-old has offered a staggering explanation for his second round defeat, claiming he drank too much before the fight.

Costa 'a little drunk' when he fought

The Brazilian claims he drank "lots of wine" to help him fall asleep the night before the fight, because a leg issue was preventing him from doing so naturally.

“I was a little drunk when I fought. Maybe I had a little hangover,” Costa said on his Youtube channel.

“I couldn’t sleep because of the leg cramps. I remember that the fight was at 9 in the morning and we had to get up at 5 in the morning to prepare, stretch, bandage our hands,” he went on.

“The UFC told us to get up to at 5 in the morning to go to the arena where we fought. I did not fall asleep until 2.30am.

“It was my fault and I don’t blame anyone else for it. It was something I chose myself, but I had to sleep because I hadn’t done it in the last 24 hours.

Israel Adesanya is seen here kicking Paulo Costa in their UFC 253 middleweight title fight.
Israel Adesanya snapped Paulo Costa's unbeaten record with. asecond round TKO at UFC 253. Pic: Getty

“I drank wine. Lots of wine. A whole bottle of wine to fall asleep. I had one drink and it didn’t work. Two drinks and it didn’t work. Half the bottle and it didn’t work. And in the end I drank it all.”

Adesanya moved to 20-0 for his career after the impressive victory over Costa, who vowed afterwards to be at his best if they step into the Octagon again.

“I want my rematch. You know I am waiting for you," Costa said.

"Something happened before the fight, I’m not [making] excuse here to my people, to my fans but I will be 100 percent to fight him and to make him pay. That’s my words. Save my words.”

Adesanya caught wind of Costa's post at the time and said he'd have no problems with a rematch.

“I can stop you again,” Adesanya wrote to Costa. “Dislike.”

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