Liam Neeson didn't hold back when asked about Irish UFC star Conor McGregor in a recent interview with Men's Health magazine.
Neeson said he "can't stand" UFC and took issue with McGregor's behavior while representing Ireland on the world stage in a recent interview with Men's Health magazine about a range of issues.
“UFC I can’t stand," Neeson told Men's Health. "That to me is like a bar fight.
"I know the practitioners are like, ‘no, you’re wrong—the months of training we do ...’ Why don’t you just grab a beer bottle and hit the other guy over the head? That’s the next stage of the UFC.
"I hate it. ... That little leprechaun Conor McGregor, he gives Ireland a bad name. I know he’s fit, and I admire him for that. But I can’t take it.”
Although Neeson, 70, has made a name for himself as an actor, he does have a strong background in combat sports, namely boxing.
The Co Antrim native was passionate about sports as a young man and excelled as a boxer.
Neeson was selected as part of the Irish amateur boxing team and even won the Northern Ireland heavyweight amateur boxing title in 1971.
He made a name for himself as a talented young fighter, but a hand injury cut his boxing career short.
Neeson switched his attention to acting and has become one of Ireland's most successful exports, starring in popular and critically-acclaimed films such as "Schindler's List," "Michael Collins," "Star Wars: the Phantom Menace," and the "Taken" triology.
Neeson has often shown off his combat skills throughout his acting career, most notably in the "Taken" franchise and in a series of recent action films.
Meanwhile, Dublin native McGregor, 34, was the first UFC fighter to hold UFC championships in two weight classes (featherweight and lightweight) simultaneously. The Irish man, who has faced a number of legal woes throughout his career, was ranked as the world's highest-paid athlete by Forbes in 2021.