Anthony Joshua admits defeat to Otto Wallin would leave 'no future' amid talk of Deontay Wilder showdown

Joshua is expected to fight Wilder next year if both win on Saturday night
Matt Verri1 minute ago

Anthony Joshua has admitted there is "no future" for him at the top of the heavyweight division if he loses to Otto Wallin.

The 34-year-old has looked to rebuild his boxing career this year after back-to-back defeats to Oleksandr Usyk, beating Jermaine Franklin and Robert Helenius to begin a journey he hopes leads to him become a three-time world champion.

It continues for Joshua on Saturday night as he tops a huge card in Saudi Arabia, with Deontay Wilder taking on Joseph Parker and Daniel Dubois fighting Jarrell Miller earlier on the same bill.

There are reports that a two-fight deal between Joshua and Wilder is close to being agreed for 2024, though that relies on both coming through their respective tests in Riyadh this weekend.

Against a man in Wallin who cut and gave Tyson Fury a real scare four years ago, Joshua knows a fourth defeat of his professional career would likely prove to be a setback too far.

Anthony Joshua headlines a stacked card on Saturday night
Mark Robinson/Matchroom Boxing

"I can definitely window shop, I know where I'm going in my life," he said at Thursday's press conference.

"If I don't get past this there is no future."

Joshua has had little interest in carrying out his various fight-week engagements, offering short answers in various interviews and using Wednesday's open workout to instead invite a group of children into the ring.

It is set to be a typically star-studded night in Saudi Arabia, but Joshua has insisted his focus will firmly be on matters inside the ring.

He said: "I want to fight. I want to perform well. Put that pressure on myself. I'm here to fight, I'm not here to party and get caught up in the glitz and glamour.

"Of course I'm tense because I want to perform, I want to win. I've got that urge to win and I want to hurt my opponent as well."

An announcement of a much-anticipated showdown with Wilder could swiftly follow Saturday's night action, should defeats and injuries be avoided by the two biggest names on the card.

Wilder, who has only ever been beaten by Tyson Fury and has had 42 of his 43 professional wins come inside the distance, has just one round under his belt in the past three years, but he has no doubts his concussive power will be on full display.

"When you're watching me, don't blink," Wilder said. "I'm going to give you what you want to see. Nowadays my name is called Doctor Sleep."

Anthony Joshua vs Otto Wallin is live on DAZN