Interviews PFL MENA

Xavier Alaoui: “Give You Guys Highlight Reels” in PFL MENA Season

Xavier Alaoui
Photo credit to @uae_Warriors on X

Xavier Alaoui battles Rachid Haz at PFL MENA 1 on May 10th in a high-stakes bantamweight bout.

Alaoui has been familiar with the PFL as a viewer for years now. The 32-year-old feels his broader track record lends itself well to the PFL framework with several finishes to his credit and the structure of the company allocating more points towards fighters who end the bout inside the distance.

PFL personnel were impressed by Alaoui and felt he won his last fight even though it was technically a defeat on the scorecards. This transpired in the co-main event of UAE Warriors 44 against Balgyn Jenisuly last August. ‘The Breadman’ feels his record is riddled with split decision losses that should have actually gone his way. So he was more inclined to laugh off the small bump in the road and then vaulted towards this opportunity on such a big stage thereafter.

Xavier Alaoui

Since we last spoke circa November 2020, Alaoui has become a gym owner and has two kids that he is raising in the martial arts. Referencing a picture Alaoui took with his own dad on the beach around 1994 practicing martial arts, Xavier Alaoui said,

“Yeah, bro. It’s crazy that you’re saying that I get goosebumps you know because that photo I was the age that my son is now. So it’s crazy what you’re saying. It’s true, I didn’t even realize that. So yeah, it’s a vibe, man. I get to teach, my son started training too. So I really get to do what I want and what I love and share it.”

Training out of one of Canada’s most vaunted gyms, Tristar and getting in work with guys like surging UFC bantamweight Aiemann Zahabi has paid dividends for Alaoui over thousands of hours refining his craft inside the gym.

This PFL MENA kickoff fight card emanates from The Green Halls in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia with Alaoui taking in some level of the atmosphere overseas. With time and age, he gets to enjoy things more with stress being lower and the weight cut being a dialed-in formula now.

Alaoui addresses that there will be a bit more nerves on fight night obviously but the composure and temperament came across as being on point during our conversation. Getting to travel is a compelling tendril of the job to him and while it’s mall visits as well as enjoying hot weather now, it’s all business went he cage door gets locked behind him.


The focus is squarely on this fight and the overall PFL MENA field. But Alaoui was not shy in illustrating his broader goals in the organization. The idea of stepping up to the main stage of Professional Fighters League for a chance at garnering that highly coveted million-dollar prize was something that catches the interest of the mixed martial artist stepping in there for his twentieth pro fight here.

In terms of that immediate assignment, giving his thoughts on Rachid Haz, Alaoui stated,

I’ve seen high kicks. I’ve seen a lot of kicks you know from the distance. A lot of shooting to wrestling you know. So the guy is well-rounded. Like I don’t know what he’s going to go for but I know what he uses type of thing. So I’m like kind of expecting, not expecting you know. I don’t want to be expecting too much and have a false expectation.”

“So I know what he does. I know he shoots, I know he throws a lot of kicks. Maybe he’s gonna throw a lot more hands this time. So I mean, I’m ready for it all you know. Like I like to say, it’s my style. I’m going to impose what I do. Not going to react to him, he’s gonna have to react to me.”

In summation, Xavier Alaoui quipped,

I’m really fighting because I enjoy it. I’m really out here because I want to put on a show. Like I tell the guys, man, that’s what I’ve been telling them. You’re putting me here because I’m gonna knock somebody out, I’m going to submit somebody, and I’m going to give you guys highlight reels. That’s really what matters to me right now.”

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