Boxing retirement plan announced as Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk confirmation looms

Boxing Tyson Fury Oleksandr Usyk

Boxing news: Oleksandr Usyk has suggested he could retire after Tyson Fury fight

Jack Otway

By Jack Otway

Published: 14/11/2023

- 08:35

Updated: 14/11/2023

- 10:32

The two men are likely to face each other in February

Boxing star Oleksandr Usyk has hinted he plans to retire and play football after his upcoming fight with Tyson Fury.

The duo had been due to step into the ring in December, with Saudi Arabian chiefs hopeful that showdown would go ahead.

However, their battle has been postponed with Fury needing more time to recuperate following his recent victory over Francis Ngannou.

The Gypsy King was knocked down in round three - but was able to emerge victorious via split decision.

Boxing news Tyson Fury Oleksandr Usyk

Boxing news: Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk are widely expected to now step into the ring together in February


Fury was left with bruising over his eye and, having been so confident of a fight with Usyk, has now been forced to delay the bout.

His rival has now spoken ahead of their potential showdown, which is expected to be announced soon.

And Usyk has hinted at retiring after the fight, while also admitting he'd love to switch sports and play football.

"I win and then I go and play football," he stated.

"I have a contract signed with the number one football team [in Ukraine], Polissya number one!"

FC Polissya Zhytomyr previously said they'd signed Usyk for one year, despite him being a boxer by trade.

"The president of the club Hennadiy Butkevich and Oleksandr Usyk concluded an official agreement on football cooperation for one year," they said in July.

"Usyk will perform under No.17. Expect other details of the contract later."

Polissya are currently just one point behind Dnipro-1 at the top of the Ukrainian Premier League.

And that's despite the minnows only earning promotion to the division last season.

Usyk is bracing himself for insults from Fury as their fight creeps closer.

But the 35-year-old has insisted he is undeterred by any mind games due to his upbringing.

“Maybe Tyson Fury wants to insult me in such a way, by saying different inappropriate things about me," he said.

“But look, for a guy who was raised in a village with Usyk [meaning little moustache] as a last name and with a gap between my front teeth, I heard so many insults about myself that at some point I started flipping them over and making them my achievements.”

He added: “I love this incredible person.

“As a human being I feel no hostility towards him. I simply love people including Tyson Fury.

“[Fury] is big, complicated, strong, but I am slightly smaller and I have an incredible motivation and I am hungry for boxing.

“I’m not motivated by money, I’m not motivated by things of today, I don’t care about material things.

“I care for the path I follow, I have chased this for 20 years.”

Both Fury and Usyk are undefeated during their glittering boxing careers so far.


Boxing news Oleksandr Usyk

Boxing news: Oleksandr Usyk plans to play football once his fight with Tyson Fury is done


The Briton has won 34 of his 35 fights, drawing the other against Deontay Wilder in 2018.

He did, however, beat the American twice after that match.

Usyk, meanwhile, has secured 21 victories from as many matches - with an impressive 14 of them coming via knockout.

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