Francis Ngannou vs. Anthony Joshua is a 'done deal' and will take place in Saudi Arabia as details emerge
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Anthony Joshua will take on Francis Ngannou in a 10-round boxing fight, according to reports.
The heavyweight contest is said to be a "done deal" and will be scheduled for March 9 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, according to MMA Junkie.
There will be a press conference later this month in London to confirm the news, says Ariel Helwani, who was informed about the match-up by Turki Alalshikh, the Saudi adviser and Chairman of the General Entertainment Authority.
Ngannou is set to return to the Middle East after such an impressive performance against Tyson Fury, where he dropped 'The Gypsy King' in round three before losing a controversial split decision.
Anthony Joshua, meanwhile, arrives on the back of a TKO victory over Otto Wallin, which made it three wins from three in 2023.
This news shouldn't come as much of a surprise given Eddie Hearn's comments earlier this week. AJ's promoter said a fight between Joshua and Ngannou would be "absolutely colossal".
"Our aim, and we’ve expressed this, is to fight the winner of Fury-Usyk. That’s all we want to do. Obviously, there’s the [Filip] Hrgovic fight out there for the world heavyweight title.
"There’s a Francis Ngannou fight out there, which would be absolutely colossal. There’s other heavyweights as well. The [Zhilei] Zhang fight possibly as well with Queensbury.”
Hearn added: “[Joseph] Parker, yeah, possibly. It’s difficult. We fought Parker, beat him, unified against him, it was five years ago whatever it was, but Joseph’s definitely earned the right for a big fight. He’s just beaten Deontay Wilder, so we don’t rule that out either.”
Anthony Joshua's former trainer Robert Garcia believes AJ would score an easy victory over former UFC heavyweight champion Ngannou.
"It’s an easy fight for Joshua. Those fights shouldn’t even be sanctioned," Garcia told ES NEWS.
"Ngannou, fighting the heavyweight champion of the world, Fury, it shouldn’t have been sanctioned. It’s a disrespect to boxing not to train one single day for that fight. It was embarrassing."