ANTHONY JOSHUA has confirmed talks are underway with Deontay Wilder as he teased a mega two-fight Saudi Arabia super night involving Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk.
AJ returned to the ring with a unanimous decision victory over Jermaine Franklin at The 02 this month following his successive title losses to Osyk.
Rumours have been rife since that he is in line to face former WBC champ Wilder, who beat Robert Helenius in his comeback fight in October, next.
The American’s manager Shelly Finkel recently confirmed that the Bronze Bomber was “willing to fight” AJ – and the Brit has revealed discussions have already begun.
Joshua sealed a unanimous decision victory over Jermaine Franklin at The O2 earlier this month, while Wilder demolished Robert Helenius inside one round last October.
Joshua told an audience at the Under Armour store located inside Battersea Power Station: “In December potentially there is a big fight that should be cracking with me and Wilder. It has been a long time coming.
“There are a lot of moving shapes at the minute, so one step at a time. But it has been a long time coming, for sure.”
However, reports have also been mounting that a potential Christmas cracker would be part of a blockbuster Middle East evening that would be headlined by the long-awaited heavyweight unification bout between Fury and Usyk.
AJ told Sky Sports News: “Have you ever heard of anything like that before? Two heavyweight clashes on the same night.
“The rumours that are circulating, there might be some truth behind it.”
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Despite eyeing up that potential showdown at the end of 2023, Joshua is also planning for another bout before that this summer.
He added: “I’m preparing for that big fight, when it comes. I’m just taking it one fight at a time and building, so that by the time I get to that finish line, I’ve got something in the tank. That’s how I’m getting on with this year.
“I’ve had my first fight; I’ve spoken to my coach, hopefully I can fight in July or August – keep that momentum – and then by December, there’s rumours going around that I’m going to be in a big showdown – and I can’t wait.”
Discussing the prospect of that potential blockbuster evening in Saudi, his Matchroom promoter Eddie Hearn said: “From our side Anthony Joshua is ready to sign to fight Deontay Wilder or Tyson Fury, subject to contract, which has never been a problem for us in Saudi because we’ve always found a deal.
“It looks like – and I can’t tell you until I go – they want to do this huge night of Usyk against Fury and Joshua against Wilder.
“It sounds bizarre, it sounds mad, but it’s the kind of place where that could happen. We’re all in and we’ll go next week, look them in the eye and we’ll see where we get to.
“We’re up for it. I’m going out to Saudi next week to have those conversations, to start the process to see if it’s real or not. I know it’s real because I’ve dealt with those guys before.
“There’s four fighters they are going to have to sign, but we’re happy to fight Deontay Wilder or Tyson Fury in Saudi Arabia in December.”