Anthony Joshua blasted for 'gloating' with antics leaving a 'bitter taste' ahead of Francis Ngannou fight

Anthony Joshua blasted for 'gloating' with antics leaving a 'bitter taste' ahead of Francis Ngannou fight

WATCH NOW: Sports round-up as Anthony Joshua and Francis Ngannou fight creeps closer

Jack Otway

By Jack Otway

Published: 04/03/2024

- 12:24

AJ will be hoping to reign supreme in Friday's blockbuster showdown in Saudi Arabia

British heavyweight and former WBO interim champion Joe Joyce has admitted he's not Anthony Joshua's biggest fan ahead of the 34-year-old's fight with Francis Ngannou on Friday.

AJ previously beat Joyce in an amateur contest back in 2011, long before the pair became the boxers they are today.

Joshua was later filmed laughing at his opponent after being shown his highlights from the fight, igniting the bad blood between the pair in the process.

And Joyce has accused AJ of 'gloating' while also admitting the footage left a 'bad taste' in his mouth.

Boxing Anthony Joshua

Boxing star Anthony Joshua is currently preparing for his sensational showdown with Francis Ngannou in Saudi Arabia


Previewing Joshua's fight with Ngannou, he told OLBG: "Personally I like Ngannou.

"I've spent more time with him recently than I have Joshua.

"There's been a bit of needle with Joshua, a bit of back and forth in the press.

"I didn't enjoy him gloating when he was watching a video of the fight we had in the amateurs. I saw a clip of him watching our fight back with his friends and giggling and laughing at it.

"It was some footage I saw. I've not spoken to him for a long time but it left a bitter taste in my mouth.

"He was my team-mate and he supported me through the bad decision I had in Rio [in 2016] and I supported him leading up to the London Olympics because I got in the squad and it was always very competitive with him.

"I'd love to fight AJ one day."

Joyce has warned Joshua he'll need to 'be careful on Friday due to Ngannou's sensational punching power.

He continued: "Joshua can hit hard but if he fights fire with fire and he could get caught in the flames it could be over.

"He needs to be careful and get his shots off too.

"Francis can test AJ’s chin. AJ’s shown he hasn't got the best chin, he's shown he's a bit of a glass cannon.

"He has explosive power but also he’s quite fragile. But how can I talk? I've just been knocked out, so I can't talk.

"But look at what Ngannou did against Fury, he knocked him down and arguably won the fight, and he could do the same to Joshua. He needs to because Ngannou is not going to get the decision.

“If Francis lands a big bomb on Joshua’s chin, Joshua’s going down. Equally, Joshua's got power and if he can put them punches together and use his experience, probably keep it a lot more long range, I can see why some are making him the favorite.

"If the odds are good for a Francis knockout, I’m putting my money on that. It’s a 50-50 fight.



Joe Joyce and Anthony Joshua used to be close with the pair previously team-mates at the Olympics


"I'll say Joshua on points or Ngannou for the upset by KO.”

He continued: “Joshua and Ngannou are quite similar fighters, there's not too much difference between their height and reach.

"Joshua's way more experienced in boxing. But Ngannou actually started out in boxing before moving into MMA.

Boxing Francis Ngannou

Anthony Joshua has been warned about Francis Ngannou's punching power ahead of their fight on Friday


"He’s had great coaching and he's shown how good he is in his last performance against Fury where he knocked him down as well.

"It's a very close fight and styles make fights."

You may like