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Chris Weidman earned his place back in the win column in July with a third round submission victory against Kelvin Gastelum, snapping in the process a three-fight losing streak which had threatened to usher the former middleweight champion to the fringes of divisional contendership.

Another fighter apparently carving a path back to the summit of the division is Ronaldo ‘Jacare’ Souza. The Brazilian was defeated by Robert Whittaker in an interim title bout earlier this year and his manager Gilberto Faria contends that a bout between his charge and Weidman is necessary to establish a line of challengers for Michael Bisping’s title.

Speaking to MMAFighting, Faria said: “I believe that Weidman might be the next fight, in late-December or early-January, if that’s a good date for the UFC to book this fight. When we get closer to that date, we’ll see more clearly what the options are for Jacare’s next opponent.

Faria said that the UFC has offered his fighter bouts with Lyoto Machida and Luke Rockhold recently but injury concerns have made those bouts untenable.

Souza (24-5-1) has lost just twice in the UFC. Those came at the hands of Whittaker and Yoel Romero, while he also dropped a bout to Rockhold under the Strikeforce banner in 2011.