Dejan Lovren takes on MMA legend as former Liverpool defender made to tap out

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Dejan Lovren has always been a bit of a unique character.

The ex-Liverpool and Southampton centre back, Dejan Lovren, decided to try out some alternative fitness work to prepare himself for Croatia’s upcoming World Cup Qualifiers against Slovenia, Cyprus and Malta.

The 31-year-old defender left Anfield to join Zenit Saint Petersburg last year in a deal worth £12 million after winning both the Premier League and Champions League titles with Liverpool.

His new side currently sit top in the Russian Premier League, holding a four-point advantage over Spartak Moscow.

With there being no league match this weekend, Lovren decided to test himself in the Octagon against UFC legend Mirko ‘Cro Cop’ Filipovic.

Nothing like easing yourself into another sport is there?

Just to give you an idea of the calibre that Lovren was facing, Filiapovic, 46, started out as an amateur boxer where he won 48 of his 56 bouts before he became a pro in both kickboxing and MMA.

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During ‘Cro Cop’s’ kickboxing career he won 26 out of 34 fights and claimed the K-1 Grand Prix World Championship back in 2012.

While in MMA, he won 38 of his 52 appearances in the Octagon and impressively ended his career with ten consecutive victories.

Unfortunately for Filipovic, however, he was forced to retire in 2019 following a stroke during training.

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You can watch the footage here.

Indeed, it was very much to Lovren’s credit that he was able to last around 50 seconds against the legendary fighter. It did, however, end unsurprisingly with the footballer tapping out to a brutal arm bar.

Lovren subsequently shared footage of his Octagon experience on his Instagram account and wrote:

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“Had this morning a short training session against @crocop1009.

“What a beast this man still is. Was a big pleasure Mirko. Thank you.”

So, even though it was a clear mismatch it certainly proved to be an entertaining watch and it was clearly an experience that the Croatian centre back enjoyed.

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