CONOR MCGREGOR was left in floods of tears after his first defeat in MMA, a new book about the Irishman has claimed.
Obsessions, by French sports writer Charles Thiallier, offers up a series of lesser-known stories about the two-weight UFC champion, who retired from the sport last month.
Chief among them is one involving Artemij Sitenkov, who was the first man to beat the Irishman in the Octagon.
According to Sitenkov, it was a defeat the 19-year-old McGregor didn’t take too well.
The Lithuanian claims the Irish fighter was inconsolable after the loss and was still crying about the defeat in the dressing room after the bout.
“Conor tried to get into my head during the weigh-in," Sitekov says in extracts carried by the Daily Mail.
In the immediate aftermath of the loss, Sitenkov recalled how “Conor stayed on the ground for a few minutes. He was crying and he was completely devastated.
“I had to go to his dressing room to try to cheer him up and he was still crying when I got in.”
The book details the two sides of McGregor’s character, from the time he squared up to Kieran Campbell, the first fighter he ever faced in the sport back in 2017 to the special bond he struck up while staying with Jon Vidar Arnthorsson during a training trip in Iceland.
In Obsessions, Arnthorsson recalled: “Conor had really enjoyed his week. I knew at the time he did not have any money because he did not have work.
“But before he went to take his flight to get back to Dublin he went to withdraw all his money in order to buy a gift for my first child. It is something I will never forget.”
Author Thiallier, spent months researching McGregor’s background growing up in Crumlin, South Dublin. The book touches on McGregor’s complex relationship with the people of his homeland.
Thiallier added: “His love for Crumlin seems real. A lot of people have seen him taking time with kids and he seems to come back a lot.
“Some of his neighbours that I met knew him since he was six years old. Most of them described him as a cheeky kid.”
The French writer, for his part, believes McGregor’s impact will not be fully realised until for a while yet.
“Even though I know he is not that popular right now in Ireland, I think that whether we like him or not, in 10 or 20 years’ time he will have his name among the most influential sports people of his generation,” he writes.
"He is the guy who made MMA popular around the world, he is the face of the UFC and he probably changed the sports for ever.”