Mixed martial arts legend Fedor Emelianenko questions whether the UFC want his fellow Russian compatriot Khabib Nurmagomedov as champion.

"The Eagle's" last fight was an impressive win over Michael Johnson at UFC 205 where in the post fight interview, he called out lightweight champion Conor McGregor and demanded a title shot.

Nurmagomedov – who boasts an impressive 24-0 record in MMA – will finally get his chance, albeit against Tony Ferguson for the interim lightweight title at UFC 209.

However, many feel he deserved a title shot earlier as the Dagestan native is currently 8-0 in the UFC since debuting for the company in 2012.

Fedor – who was supposed to fight at Bellator 172 until his opponent pulled out – believes the UFC are not sure if they want the 28-year-old as their champion.

"He's a candidate for a fight for a very long time, but he doesn't have a chance at that fight," he told MMAFighting. "They wouldn't like that opportunity for him."

"I think Khabib is a very good fighter and he has everything going for him to become champion with the UFC. Another thing to continue is whether the UFC wants that or not."

When asked why he thought Nurmagomedov was not receiving the opportunities he deserved, the 40-year-old theorised it had to do with politics.

"I don't know," he explained. "That's just the politics in the UFC. For me, a lot of UFC actions are still a mystery."

UFC 209 takes place on 4 March and Nurmagomedov is already talking about humbling McGregor in the octagon, however, Ferguson has recently warned the former not to look past him.