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Paulo Costa Replaces Manager Wallid Ismail With Girlfriend Tamara Alves Ahead of UFC 278

Paulo Costa
Image Courtesy: MMA Weekly / @tamara_alves on Instagram

Days before returning to the Octagon at UFC 278, former UFC Middleweight title challenger Paulo Costa (13-2) has made a huge change in his team, as he parted ways with longtime manager Wallid Ismail, and will now be represented by his model girlfriend Tamara Alves.

I have nothing bad to say about Wallid: Paulo Costa

Currently on a two fight losing streak, Costa is set to return to action this 20th August when he takes on former divisional champion Luke Rockhold at UFC 278. Having lost to 185-pound champ Israel Adesanya and Marvin Vettori in his last two outings, getting back on track against Rockhold is vital for “Borrachinha”.

However, less than two weeks ahead of the fight, the Brazilian fired his longtime manager and compatriot Wallid Ismail and will now be represented by his girlfriend of nine years, Tamara Alves.

Costa made the announcement through a video on his YouTube channel, stating that while he still holds high regards for Wallid, there were clash of opinions regarding his career which made him tahe the decision.

“I have nothing bad to say about Wallid. He is an honest person and very professional, I just have compliments about him,” said Costa, “We just have different views about my career and, because of that, we decided to not work together anymore.” [H/T Sherdog]

Alves, a stunning model, and owner of a gym in Brazil, will now be in charge of handling her boyfriend’s fights and contracts with the UFC. The two had met each other at a gym back in 2013 and have been together since then.

“I met Paulo in 2013. My cousin’s husband trained with him at the gym. He said, “Wow, Tata, there is this very handsome guy at the gym. I think you’d like him.” The gym was hosting a jiu-jitsu championship and he told me to stop by. Paulo was competing there. We greeted each other but didn’t talk. He was really focused,” Alves told ESPN in an interview back in 2020.

Costa will be returning to action nearly a year after his loss to Vettori at UFC Vegas 41 last October, which also marked the 31-year-old’s light heavyweight debut.

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