Olympian Michael Conlan will be ready for war when he faces IBF featherweight world champion Luis Alberto Lopez on May 27 at the SSE Arena in Belfast.

Last year, Conlan challenged Leigh Wood for the WBA featherweight strap.

The Irish boxer dropped Wood hard in the first round and rocked him several times in the first half of the fight. Wood rallied in the second half, dropping Conlan in the eleventh and knocking him out in dramatic fashion in the twelfth.

This time around, Conlan is confident of achieving his dream.

“Winning a world title has been my dream since I walked through the doors of a gym. Of course as an amateur you’re always thinking about one day going to the Olympics but the professional game was always in your face, those were the guys you were watching every week because the Olympics is only every four years," Conlan told the Belfast Telegraph.

“I’ve put my life into this sport, I turned professional to be a world champion and if I don’t win a world title than I’ll consider my career a failure. The last three Irish world champions have all won the IBF title and I’d like to think that I can make it four."

Lopez has a tricky style and quick punching power, which makes him a very tough test. 

He captured the world title last December, by traveling to Leeds and winning a twelve round decision over hometown hero Josh Warrington.

Conlan views Lopez as a bigger challenge in comparison to last year's title clash with Wood.

“This has the potential to really spark because of the clash of styles and I suppose with my history it has the potential to be a Fight of the Year contender,” said Conlan.

“I would say this is a bigger challenge than Wood because this guy has won the world title away from home and beaten some good fighters along the way and I think his ring IQ is better than Wood. Credit to Wood, he is very tough and beat me, but his ring IQ isn’t great and my mind hasn’t changed on that.

“Lopez is the better boxer and would beat Wood I’m sure. The experience of last year is going to help me a lot. I believe I’m a better fighter because of it and I will react better in the heat of battle.”