Fighting out of Morocco by way of Denver, Colorado, United States, Youssef “The Moroccan Devil” Zalal, 23, has earned his first victory in the Ultimate Fighting Championship. The Moroccan-American mixed martial artist was one of the winners at “UFC 247.”
Featuring 12 MMA matches, “UFC 247” took place at the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas, USA on February 8, 2020. In the first bout of the evening, Zalal competed in the featherweight division against Austin “Lights Out” Lingo, 25, of Mesquite, Texas.
Jeff Rexroad served as the referee. After three five-minute rounds, the featherweight contest was left in the hands of the three judges, who all scored it 30-27.
In the end, Rexroad raised the hand of Zalal. The Moroccan-American contender was declared the winner via unanimous decision.
This made Zalal the first ever MMA fighter to beat Lingo in a professional bout. The Texan contender now has 7 wins and 1 loss.
Winning at “UFC 247” improved the professional MMA record of Zalal to 8 wins and 2 losses. He is now riding a two-bout winning streak.
Lingo and Zalal made their respective UFC debuts at “UFC 247.” They both previously competed in the Legacy Fighting Alliance.
“I accepted (the offer to fight in the UFC) as soon as they called me,” Zalal said right after his first UFC win. “This is what I was born to do.”
Originally from Morocco, Zalal was 10 years old when he started his training in kickboxing. He was 15 years old when he moved to the U.S.
After competing as an amateur fighter from 2015 to 2016, Zalal made his professional MMA debut in 2017. He was undefeated from 2017 to 2018.
Zalal is training out of Factory X Muay Thai in Englewood, California. Here is his “UFC 247” post-fight backstage interview: