Bellator have announced a six-event European fight series that will air on Channel 5 throughout 2019.

The first event as announced by the promotions CEO Scott Coker will air this Saturday, February 9th 10 p.m. GMT, from the Metro Radio Arena in Newcastle and will be headlined by former lightweight title challenger Patricky ‘Pitbull’ Freire and Sunderland-born Ryan Scope.

The North-East event will also feature former reality TV star Aaron Chalmers vs. Corey Browning, Fabian Edwards vs. Lee Chadwick and Terry Brazier vs. Chris Bungard.

Paul Dunthorne, COO of Channel 5/Viacom International, said of the deal via The Telegraph: “Mixed Martial Arts is one of the fastest growing sports in the world and Bellator are leading the way in the UK with their European Fight Series in 2019.

“We are partnering with an exciting brand and it is great news for our viewers who will be able to watch some of the biggest names in the sport compete live on free to air TV. Bellator brings the very best fight cards to Europe and we are excited to be able to bring our viewers closer to all of the drama and excitement that we know it will deliver.’

David Green, Head of Bellator Europe, continued: “We are delighted to bring UK fight fans the very best MMA action live on free-to-air terrestrial TV, where it will be seen by the biggest TV audience, bringing viewers closer to the action than ever before.”

“Channel 5 is the perfect platform for us to expand the popularity and customer reach of MMA in the UK and I believe they are a great match for our brand. They already have an engaged audience who are committed to the sport and that dedicated fanbase will help us grow here in the UK as we continue to create household names.

“Bellator athletes are among the most talented and exciting in the world and we look forward to seeing the partnership with Channel 5 develop over the next 12 months.”