In the nine-year life of Full Contact Contender has had its fair share of incredible fights and viral moments, Along with helping showcase some of the best fighters to grace the UK shores then, now and certainly the prospects of the future. It’s hard to narrow down just how many talented athletes we have given cage time to, however, we have managed to create a list of the top fifteen fighters that have set foot in the FCC battleground
15) Aaron Aby
If you aren’t aware of Aaron Aby’s fight career and life story, it continues to be one of the most amazing tales in UK MMA history. A cystic fibrosis and cancer survivor, Aby went unbeaten at amateur and had infamous battles along the way with UK standouts such as Scott Gregory and Mick Gerrard before progressing to the professional level, taking on names such as Andy Young, Coner Hignett and Danny Missin.
Aby now boasts a professional record of 11-3 and continues to raise awareness for Cystic Fibrosis with his #FightingToBreathe campaign.
14) Tim Wilde
Tim Wilde may refer to himself as ‘The Experiment,’ but as far as we’re concerned, he’s been a pretty successful one in his career thus far, boasting a 13-4 record while holding not one but two FCC titles during his time with our promotion.
His surname of Wilde is very fitting of the man, with his free-spirited manner to take risks inside the cage in order to catch his opponent off-guard and keep them guessing. With wins over FCC alumni Charlie Leary, Martin Delaney and Ian Williams taking him to fight on the national and European stages, Tim’s resume speaks volumes of his ability and the excitement that he brings with each and every performance.
13) Kane ‘The Danger’ Mousah
When Kane Mousah arrived on the FCC stage after a long absence from cage, it was clear we were witnessing a notorious battler with a lot of strong potential. While he had gone 2-0 four years prior, this second-coming was almost a chance to re-debut for Mousah and reintroduce himself to a newer audience and reintroduce himself, he certainly did.
Kane went on to finish his next four FCC opponents – all in the first round by both TKO and submission. He has since gone on to climb into the top ten UK featherweight fighters, competing on shows such as BAMMA to challenge for their world title. He has also fought on ACB and Bellator, earning big victories over fighters such as veteran Alex Enlund, Lewis Monarch and Myles Price, amassing a strong record of 12-3.
12) Lee Chadwick
Anyone who is anyone on the UK circuit will know the name of ‘The Butcher,’ Lee Chadwick. Boasting a record of 25-15, he is no stranger to the cage. The former Cage Warriors champion has held gold at every level, including an FCC middleweight title.
Through his gritty, grinding fight style, Lee has certainly inserted himself as one of the toughest matchups you can come across in UK MMA, his record across shows such as Cage Warriors, Bellator and our very own FCC speaking for itself.
11) Charlie Leary
Charlie ‘917’ Leary may be a mixed bag at 16-11, but each of his fights has been of a notable nature on shows all across the globe. Interestingly enough, the Team Crossface lightweight fighter is undefeated in his three FCC outings over tough veterans in Marc Clark, Michael Bowman and retiring UK legend, Rob Sinclair.
Those three notable victories took Leary from the regional scene towards a global scale, fighting on traveling shows such as BRAVE CF and multiple big Bellator shows. Leary continues to fight the toughest opponents he can get, recently picking up a decision victory over popular Scotsman, Chris Bungard on Bellator 223.
10) Kenneth Richardson
As far as FCC staples go, Kenneth ‘K-Force’ Richardson is the epitome of that moniker. After a short, early stint at amateur, Kenneth went on to make his professional debut under the FCC banner and continue to have all but one of his fights inside the FCC cage.
Richardson retired after his last victory remaining undefeated whilst having captured two FCC titles simultaneously and silencing the critics who doubted his boxing prowess versus Tom Briggs.
9) Tom Aspinall
Having grown up in the sport of MMA, it seemed fairly likely that Aspinall was bound to step into the sport sooner or later. Having a remarkable set of grappling skills as just a young amateur arriving on the FCC scene, he already found himself ahead of many a UK heavyweight. Tom remained undefeated throughout his amateur career and did the very same in his first three professional bouts.
Following his first loss, continued to work on all aspects of his prowess, but soon found himself mainly competing in boxing competition and serving as a main sparring partner for UFC star Darren Till. He has since returned to the UK MMA scene, in 2019, signing with Cage Warriors. Following two first-round victories, Aspinall signed with the UFC and awaits his promotional debut at 7-2. Aspinall was always expected to see big things, now he’s in the world’s biggest promotional, it’s only a matter of time until we see how things develop.
8) Ashley Reece
Ashley ‘The Beast’ Reece was one of the first true prospects to grace the FCC battleground. Reece also completed all of his amateur tenure on FCC shows as well as his early professional career. However, throughout all the fights, the birthing moment of Reece’s career came early at amateur in what is still regarded as the best fight to ever take place on FCC territory at FCC 8 in 2013.
It had everything you wanted in a fight between two outstanding prospects. Reece also continued to dominate the FCC championship scene with wins over top names such as Daryl Golding, Jonno Mears, Sam Boult, and Tobias Reid, allowing to boast an impressive record of 8-2 that has taken him up the ranks to Bellator MMA.
7) Brett McDermott
For the FCC faithful, Brett ‘The Spartan’ McDermott is a beloved character that is held dearly at heart, having been a familiar face on FCC from the earliest of events. An unexpected powerhouse and inspiring tale, coming to MMA late in his competitive years, ‘The Spartan’ made himself known in the MMA scene taking on all comers and picking up victories in unpredictable scenarios.
Brett is a fighter at heart, having shown so in situations where – only one day after retirement – accepts an offer to battle ‘King Mo’ Lawal in Japan! McDermott has remained out of retirement and took his ninth professional victory in March, taking his record to 9-5. Before it’s all said and done, we hope we can see Brett back on FCC one more time.
6) Sam Spencer
‘Smooth’ Sam Spencer is another example of the level of prospects showcased on FCC events. An undefeated amateur with a lot of hype around him for his superior wrestling and grappling skills that continued to develop under the tutelage of Manchester Predators. Sam’s abilities have been tested throughout his MMA career, but none more than the testament to his toughness at FCC 15 against Bryan Creighton, fighting through a first-round horrifically broken jaw to win by unanimous decision.
The bantamweight’s pressuring fight style and ever-flourishing striking abilities continued to be on show most recently, just one year ago at FCC 23, knocking out the undefeated Ryan Holdham to claim the FCC bantamweight title in just thirty-seven seconds, taking his record to 6-2.
5) Jack Cartwright
A man who has been making headlines around the European scene in the last 12 months is Jack Cartwright. A phenomenal talent who possesses elite wrestling skills and knockout power, making him quite the rare force and the #1 professional bantamweight in the UK.
Cartwright has been a long-time member of the UK scene and has long been reaching his true potential, showing just what he could do along the way on FCC shows.
The rat-tail rocker’s dominance was known to those inside the scene, so there was no surprise to from us to see him capture the Cage Warriors bantamweight title and remain undefeated at 8-0 in the process. Cartwright has got the fight world talking!
4) Matt Inman
If there was anyone who has been battle-tested in MMA, it’s the formidable Matt Inman. Amassing a record of 20-10, Inman has never been one to shy away from tricky opposition. His expert grappling abilities rounded with his brilliant Muay Thai style of stand-up has seen many opponents fall victim to his nasty work inside the clinch with tight elbows and knees. In the last decade, Inman has certainly been one of the frontrunners of north-west mixed martial arts.
3) Lerone Murphy
Lerone ‘The Miracle’ Murphy has undoubtedly been one of the fastest rising talents UK MMA has seen. His affiliation with gyms such as All Powers, Manchester Top Team and Alliance in San Diego, California allowed him to develop a rich and vast fighting style, enabling him to take big wins in rapid fashion. After going 3-0 at amateur, Murphy took the leap to professional where he has accumulated a record of 8-0-1.
The featherweight is a veteran of five FCC appearances, dating back to his final victory on the domestic scene versus Manolo Scianna before joining the ranks of the UFC last September, which you can watch here.
2) Paddy Pimblett
One of the most outspoken and charismatic figures in on the domestic scene, from his unmistakable entrance routine to his unorthodox flying triangle victories, Paddy ‘The Baddy’ Pimblett has captured his city and the MMA audience like no other in the UK has been able to do.
After the temporary seizing of the business of Cage Warriors in 2015, FCC promoter Adam Teh was quick to snatch the signature of ‘The Baddy’ for multiple bouts in ones in which did not disappoint. His most stunning performance coming to Kevin Petshi at FCC 12. Paddy has since returned to Cage Warriors with a remarkable win last month, adding to his 15-3 record and ready to chase gold once again.
1) Brendan Loughnane
The rise of Brendan Loughnane from his 2012 stint on The Ultimate Fighter: The Smashes series to Dana White’s Contender Series to his Professional Fight League performances has been one amazing story. Outside of Michael Bisping, the UK has long desired a star and as they all come at once, Loughnane continues to the brightest star denied a shot in the UFC.
The popular Mancunian had a very successful stint on FCC, going 3-0 – finishing two of his three opponents by TKO. It only seems Brendan can be denied for so long, but his dominant ways make for strong viewing pleasure. Enjoy his fantastic performance versus the veteran Ali ‘Insane’ Maclean that set him on his way to a superb record of 18-3.
Steven ‘Clocky T’ Hooper
In his young career thus far, Steven ‘Clocky T’ Hooper has been making a name of himself by taking on the toughest tests he can get his hands on, seemingly fighting a whos-who of UK MMA. Holding a record of 5-3, it’s clear that he sees no time for padding records and wants the best he can get.
FCC hasn’t seen too much of Hooper in his professional career as of yet, however, his last appearance versus the ever-gritty Ellis Hampson at FCC 21 made for not only a Fight of the Night award but a certain contender for Fight of the Year. It was a topsy-turny fight that saw Hooper get the nod from the judges at the end, but one fight we will never forget.
The lightweight battler has since gone on to make waves on Cage Warriors, winning his last two recent bouts by submission.
An often forgotten haven for mixed martial that is criminally underrated is Scotland and ‘The Bear Jew’ Paul Craig is one of those stars that you cannot take lightly. Craig competed on FCC 10 in 2014, just starting out in his professional career, picking up a first-round triangle choke – a submission that has seen him through even the closest of bouts during his UFC tenure – with the latest stoppage in a UFC fight – helping him attain his 12-4 record.