Here are Guy Giles' best UFC predictions for Israel Adesanya v Paulo Costa at UFC 253. Visit the Betway Insider for picks on all the biggest fights on Fight Island. 

Adesanya v Costa odds:

The main event of UFC 253 is one of the most anticipated fights of the year as middleweight champion Israel Adesanya meets Paulo Costa on Fight Island.

These two undefeated fighters have been trading barbs for more than a year now, and Costa finally gets his shot at the 185lb belt following a series of injuries and USADA investigations.

‘Borrachinha’ has won 12 of his 13 career fights by stoppage – 11 knockouts and one submission – with his most recent fight against Yoel Romero the only one to go the distance.

The champ boasts an equally impressive record, with 14 of his 19 victories coming inside the distance, including his crowning moment – a brutal knockout of Robert Whittaker to claim UFC gold.

‘The Last Stylebender’ heads to Yas Island as slight favourite to successfully defend his belt for second time, following his decision victory over Romero in March.

Costa, meanwhile, is the underdog as he prepares for his first shot at a UFC title.

Adesanya v Costa prediction:

The contrasting styles of these two fighters should mean this contest takes on a clear pattern from the opening bell.

Costa will look to apply constant forward pressure throughout the fight, particularly in the opening two rounds as he seeks a trademark early knockout.

The Brazilian’s power is frightening enough to trouble the biggest heavyweights, so Adesanya is unlikely to want to stand and trade.

Though all of Costa’s previous opponents have eventually wilted under this pressure, Adesanya should, in fact, thrive.

His slick movement and unrivalled ability to strike from distance make him a tricky opponent for ‘Borrachinha’, who commits heavily to every strike.

If Costa lands cleanly early on, then the fight is likely to be over in a flash.

Should he fail to take Adesanya out, though, it could be a long night for the challenger.

Adesanya possesses world-class cardio and conditioning and, if the fight enters the championship rounds, he should be able to pick off Costa with relative ease.

Adesanya to win by decision

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