Alan Belcher to fight Vitor Belfort

Updated: July 25, 2012, 12:19 AM ET
By Brett Okamoto | ESPN.com

Middleweight contenders Alan Belcher and Vitor Belfort have verbally agreed to square off at UFC 153 in October.

Sources close to the event confirmed the matchup to ESPN.com on Tuesday. MMAjunkie.com first reported the news.

The UFC 153 event is scheduled to take place Oct. 13 in Rio de Janeiro. A featherweight title fight between Jose Aldo and Erik Koch is slated to headline.

Belfort (21-9) hasn't fought since posting a first-round submission win over Anthony Johnson at UFC 142. He had been scheduled to fight Wanderlei Silva at UFC 147, but withdrew because of a hand injury.

Earlier on Tuesday, the Brazilian wrote on his Twitter account he was in talks with UFC matchmaker Joe Silva on a potential fight against Chris Weidman. Weidman, coming off a convincing win over Mark Munoz, has been campaigning for an immediate title shot against champion Anderson Silva.

Belcher (18-6) will carry a four-fight win streak into the October contest. The 28-year-old has won six of his past seven fights, with the lone loss coming by way of a controversial split decision to Yoshihiro Akiyama at UFC 100.

Belfort, the No. 2-ranked middleweight in the world by ESPN.com, fell short in his bid for a title against Silva at UFC 126 in February 2011. Belcher, ranked No. 7, never has fought for a UFC title.