Who was the first UFC champion from Ireland?

  • The first Irish UFC champion was crowned in 2015
  • Conor McGregor is the only Irish champion the UFC has ever had, so far
  • Conor McGregor won titles in two weight classes
UFC 205: Alvarez v McGregor
UFC 205: Alvarez v McGregor / Michael Reaves/GettyImages

Conor McGregor is a fighter who truly lives up to his nickname of notorious.

A fighter who is both loved and hated by fans, there is no doubt that McGregor is one of the most captivating fighters in UFC history. Along with being in four of the top five most purchased UFC pay-per-views of all time, McGregor made history when he became the first UFC champion to represent Ireland.

McGregor first earned a UFC title when he defeated Chad Mendes for the interim UFC featherweight title at UFC 183 in Las Vegas on July 11, 2015. McGregor beat Mendes via TKO in the second round.

At the end of 2015, McGregor unified the UFC featherweight titles when he defeated the undisputed champion Jose Aldo in 13 seconds. Aldo had not been defeated in seven years, had never lost at featherweight, and had successfully defended the UFC title seven times. This knockout remains the fastest knockout in UFC title fight history.

After capturing the UFC featherweight title, and following two fights with Nate Diaz, McGregor made history again when he defeated UFC lightweight champion Eddie Alverez for the lightweight title in November 2016.

Conor McGregor holds several records, including being the first and only UFC Irish champion

McGregor defeated Alverez via TKO in the second round. In doing this, McGregor became the first UFC fighter to hold two titles in multiple weight classes at the same time, a feat that has only been achieved by three fighters since McGregor started the trend.

14 days after winning the UFC lightweight championship, McGregor was stripped of his featherweight title due to inactivity, ending his reign at 350 days. In 2017, McGregor began to campaign for a boxing match between himself and Floyd Mayweather, which eventually took place on Aug. 26 of the same year.

In 2018, McGregor was stripped of his UFC lightweight title due to inactivity, ending his reign at 511 days. Khabib Nurmagomedov was crowned the new UFC lightweight champion when he defeated Al Iaquinta via decision at UFC 223. McGregor would face Nurmagomedov for the lightweight title at UFC 229 in October 2018, where McGregor was submitted in the fourth round. This event is the most purchased UFC pay-per-view in the history of the company, selling 2.4 million units.

McGregor is meant to me making a return to the UFC in 2024 but, at the time of writing, we do not have an official return date.

Ian Machado Garry could be the next Irish UFC champion

Though McGregor is the only Irish champion to date, there's another Irish fighter making his way up the rankings and could join this list if he plays his cards right. Ian Machado Garry is currently undefeated in the UFC and drawing the attention of fans and fighters alike.


Next. A timeline of Conor McGregor’s criminal history [UPDATED]. dark