Conor McGregor.

Referee explains why he told Conor McGregor to move from cage side at UFC Gdansk

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At UFC Gdansk in Poland, Conor McGregor was present to support his longtime teammate Artem Lobov in his featherweight fight against Andre Fili during the preliminary card of the event.

During the fight, when Fili was in a top position on the ground against Lobov, referee Marc Goddard paused the action briefly as he noticed something out of the corner of his eye. It was McGregor standing near the Russian's corner shouting instructions despite not being a licensed corner.

Immediately, Goddard dished out instructions of his own and told the Irishman to leave the area. The referee has explained to MMA Fighting why he told the UFC Lightweight Champion to go back to his seat.

Goddard said: “The reason I interjected is because Artem gets a fourth cornerman cage side giving instruction. That’s not allowed. Imagine had Conor talked him through a fight-ending sequence. Then what?

“If Conor had stood up, stayed at his seat, then he could have shouted till his hearts content. That’s what he’s supposed to do. But what he simply cannot do, what he is not allowed to do, is approach the cage at any point and as I say act as the fourth corner. That’s unfair and unjust.

"Anyone who knows me will tell you I’ve done this forever, in any country in any situation. My integrity is not wavered and neither is the rules. We can’t allow that. I simply had to act.”

Fili ended up winning by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27) despite McGregor's presence around the Octagon throughout the fight. What he was doing was outside the bounds of what someone in the crowd with a seat should be doing, so Goddard made the right call.

This was also one of McGregor's first appearances with UFC since he lost by a 10th-round TKO in his first ever boxing match against one of the greatest boxers of all time in Floyd Mayweather.

Notorious is yet to announce his next move inside the Octagon for UFC, but there are several options for him on the table, including unifying the lightweight title by having a fight with interim champion Tony Ferguson or completing the trilogy with Nate Diaz.

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