Female UFC star shows off disfigured face after sickening head clash with rival

We all know how brutal the UFC can be, but Taila Santos was left with a broken orbital bone – which later required surgery.

Santos narrowly missed out on the victory after being edged by champion Valentina Shevchenko via a split decision, but in round three her face ballooned after an accidental clash of heads. The blow saw Santos' right eye majorly swell up, and she was almost unrecognisable.

It looked bad in the Octagon, but the severity of the injury was shared post-fight in a snap on social media. And surgery was required to aid recovery, and ensure that further damage was not risked.

Although UFC 275 was held in Singapore, Santos and her manager decided that they should wait until heading back to Brazil to undergo surgery. Her manager Tiago Okamura told MMA Fighting: "We had two options.

"To have surgery here, and God knows how long we’d have to stay and how the recovery would take. Or wait two weeks for the swelling to reduce a little bit and then have the surgery.

"The doctors said the long flight would not be a problem, and we would have a better support back home, since [Santos] would only stay with one person [in Singapore]."

Despite being rocked in the third round, several scored the fight in favour of Santos although she lost via a split decision to Shevchenko. And the champion was forced to defend the result in the post-fight press conference.

She said: "I did everything I had to do. I had challenging fight. I had five rounds, and this is exactly what I wanted, an opponent who is not giving up in the first second and goes until the end.

"In this kind of fight you can show what you’re made of. Your character, your mindset. No matter how hard, no matter how difficult.

"She was inactive, and me being even in that position I was striking and I was feeling the power of the strikes and I felt how she treated because it was hurting her. This is what counts the most in mixed martial arts, is damage.

"I could even feel in the fight round-to-round you could see more damage showing on her face more and more." Santos will certainly be back, but perhaps a little more careful next time.

Elsewhere in UFC 275, Glover Teixeira was stopped by Jiří Procházka who won via submission in round five. The Czech star is the UFC Light Heavyweight Champion following the main event win.

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