The Caged Steel Bulgaria fight card is shaping into an explosive night of fights. Among the featured bouts for the evening is a middleweight caged boxing matchup between two come-forward combatants, both known for their granite chins and throwing hands with ill intentions.

Fighting out of the blue corner is Jon Barnes Jr. Hailing out of Sheffield, England, ‘El Diablo’ will be stepping into enemy territory for the first time in his career, bringing the same grit and tenacity he’s known for. And he is more than ready for a firefight.

Standing across from him at the other end of the cage is Sofia’s son, Mario Vergiev. Even with just six bouts under his belt, the hometown fighter has created a strong impression within the local circuit with a level of toughness that can leave any fight fan in awe. 

That begs an important question: how do these two steadfast warriors match up against each other? Here’s a peek into what you can expect on fight night.

Non-Stop Action 

Barnes vs. Vergiev is one of the many reasons not to miss Caged Steel Bulgaria. Especially if you catch it live among fellow fans, you can guarantee it delivers beyond expectations. 

Both competitors are known for their aggressive approach, leaving no breathing room for their opponents. Vergiev is particularly adept at cutting off the ring, and here he is, suffocating Mario Fafera during their 2023 clash.

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Mario Vergiev: The Suffocater

Barnes employs a similar tactic, regardless of whether he’s giving up some size. He will back you into a corner and unload heavy shots. 

That particular strategy was in full swing during his Caged Steel debut in 2018 against Wayne O’Neil, who took some menacing shots as he curled onto the fence.

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Jon Barnes Jr.’s barrages are a scary sight.

It’s one thing to see two strong opposing forces face each other head-on, with no one willing to back down. But as an extra treat for Caged Steel Bulgaria fans, these two combatants share another common trait: resilience.

An All-Out War in the Making

Every fan loves a durable fighter with an iron chin who will soldier on regardless of the level of adversity. Fortunately for Caged Steel Bulgaria fans, Vergiev and Barnes have that special gene. 

Vergiev showed boss-level hardiness during his first professional fight against Ivan Stamenov in 2022. Just look at those punches he absorbed like they were nothing. If you were Stamenov, it would be a frustrating time, to say the least.

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Mario Vergiev eats uppercuts for breakfast.

You can’t count Barnes out, either. During his Caged Steel 23 bout against Scott Harper in 2019, he had to dig deep and bite down on that mouthpiece like never before.

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The Jon Barnes Jr. brand of toughness in full display.

The bout was for the Caged Steel Welterweight Title, a fight many ducked against Scott Harper. However, Jon took the challenge and it paid off. Jon Barnes Jr. not only became Caged Steel Champion, he also won a good handful of fans that night.

Caged Steel Bulgaria Is a MUST-SEE Event

If you have nothing planned for the night of May 18th, do not miss Caged Steel Bulgaria. It is the organisation’s first event outside the UK, and you will be part of this historic occasion. 

The card features a variety of fights, from MMA bouts to grappling matches and caged boxing with four-ounce gloves. If you love combat sports, this event will satisfy your cravings for artful fisticuffs and highlight reel moments inside the cage. 

Caged Steel Bulgaria happens at the Hristo Botev Hall in Sofia, the country’s prizefighting capital. Get your tickets now!

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About the author: Miguel Ordoñez is an MMA writer, lifelong fight fan, and martial arts practitioner with an amateur MMA record of 2-0. He is also a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu coach and a passionate drummer with aspirations of being the next John Bonham and Keith Moon combined. 

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