Manchester's Lerone Murphy is about to tick off a lot of firsts when he makes the walk on Saturday night.

The 32-year old will be competing in America, Las Vegas specifically, for the first time in his career having fought exclusively in the UK or in Abu Dhabi.

He will also be making the walk in his first main event following a five-fight win streak in the UFC's featherweight division after fighting to a split draw on his debut.

Last but certainly not least, he will take on his first legend of the sport when he comes up against the 35-fight veteran Edson Barboza.

With a spot on the rankings on the line for Murphy given the fact that his opponent currently occupies the #12-spot at 155-pounds, he said that it is the man he is facing rather than the occasion that is making him feel some extra pressure.

"Not really the aspect of being main event, that’s not really. It’s who I’m fighting is more so the big thing. I’m fighting Edson Barboza, a legend of the sport, dangerous fighter and that’s what excites me.”

Rather than this having a negative impact on his performance, "The Miracle" believes that having Barboza stand across the cage from him will bring the best out of him at the UFC Apex.

"I feel like that’s going to make me fight better because it’s going to add that fear factor which I need. I know looking at my previous fights, if I don’t have that fear factor, I don’t perform and so I feel like that’s going to bring the best out of me but obviously I’m not going to be showing him too much respect in there. A fight is a fight.”

This fight week marks the second time that Murphy has travelled to Las Vegas, having been to the fight capital once before as a fan of the sport.

Having watched one of the biggest cards in UFC history back in 2016 where Conor McGregor defeated Chad Mendes in the main event of UFC 189, not to mention Robbie Lawler vs Rory MacDonald 2, he is now back to headline his own event.

Murphy has been impressive each time that we have seen him inside the Octagon but having debuted in September of 2019, six fights in over four years isn't the best run of activity.

His progress has been held back by injuries and other difficulties with getting fights booked and underway but this doesn't concern him.

Having gone through some unbelievable adversity in his life to even make it to this stage, he believes that this is all part of the journey that is being laid out for him.

"Super frustrating, like you said, stop and start. I can't get no momentum behind me but everything happens for a reason and that's the way I see life now. That's why it's been a blessing, all the things I've done through in the past because that's now how I see life. Everything happens for a reason to put you onto a better path and I feel now is the time and even if I had got this fight three years ago, maybe I wouldn't have been ready but now I feel ready."

On Saturday night, in his own words, he will look to solidify his name amongst the elite of the elite at featherweight by securing the biggest win of his career to date.

Watch the full media day interview via the UFC's official YouTube channel: