Alexander Barbel took off today in Manchester to fight with Tony Bellew

Anthony Joshua says Oleksandr Usyk should be the favourite against Tony Bellew

Anthony Joshua says Oleksandr Usyk should be the favourite against Tony Bellew

But a bold prediction would be for Usyk to make a statement, landing at will from the early goings, dropping Bellew on several occasions before the contest is halted inside 4 rounds. After all, if I can carry it with its monstrous kick early in the fight, it will be for me a disaster - I'll have to pursue a career.

Were you about to retire before Usyk came up?

"If I am honest, Usyk is the favourite, straight-talking, because he's unbeaten and he's done it at cruiserweight and he's undisputed".

I was retired after the second Haye fight. "I would prefer to fight for them at catchweight, but I am the lineal champion at light-heavyweight, so I would like four more belts". But all fighters have vulnerabilities and I have to expose his. This fight is all about what it can do for me and my legacy.

You must rewire your defensive capabilities, with different angles, changing your defensive patterns, movements and counter-punching. And this nearly certainly means that the wife would leave me.

I don't think there will be an issue with Bellew coming down to the cruiserweight category after going up around a stone in weight against myself a year ago, he didn't bulk up and do a lot of bodybuilding.

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Bellew and trainer David Coldwell need a very strong game-plan, said the former WBA and IBF super-middleweight champion.

I've done it the proper way. Has he faced a man that can match him for speed because I can match him for speed.

Every time you fight you take it seriously, but when you've had a few world title fights, it can get a little bit monotonous.

The "Rickster" still harbors dreams of fighting for world titles again and a rematch with Manchester favorite Crolla is top of a list of fights he wants as he prepares to write new chapters in his fantastic journey. I can't wait for it to stop.

The Canaries announced that an evening with Merseyside slugger Tony Bellew is scheduled for Friday, February 22, with commercial manager Phil Jones set to release ticket details and further information in the coming weeks.

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