Froch slams Joshua ‘cash grab’ against Ngannou

Former unified super-middleweight champion and International Boxing Hall of Famer Carl Froch has attacked Anthony Joshua for accepting a fight with former UFC heavyweight champion and 0-1 professional boxer Francis Ngannou. 

Matchroom and Turki Alalshikh confirmed news that the former unified world heavyweight champion Joshua will face Nagnnou on March 8 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, following Joshua’s impressive victory over Otto Wallin on December 23. 

Joshua-Ngannou has come together quickly, after Deontay Wilder’s shock yet comprehensive defeat against Joseph Parker, on the same bill as Joshua-Wallin. Had Joshua and Wilder both won, they would have met this year.. 

Ngannou made his professional boxing debut on October 28, surpassing all expectations and fighting to a narrow split decision loss against Tyson Fury. Nagnnou floored Fury in the third of the scheduled ten-rounds. Despite defeat, Nagnnou was ranked No. 10 by the WBC. 

“My initial thoughts are, it’s not a bad fight,” Froch said, via his YouTube channel. “It’s a fight that Anthony Joshua could potentially struggle with. We saw [Ngannou] against Tyson Fury, and Fury struggled. Was that because Ngannou is really good, or did Fury not quite turn up? I think the latter, but Ngannou was tidy.

“It’s a fight I’m looking forward to, if I’m honest. It’s a fight I could get excited about. I’m just not sure that it should be happening because Anthony Joshua wants to become a three-time heavyweight champion. But where’s the title?

Froch would rather see Joshua box the likes of Zhileii Zhang or Filip Hrgovic, with the latter likely to happen as a vacant world title opportunity after Fury fights Usyk next month. The ‘Cobra’ suggested that Joshua-Ngannou was not good for the heavyweight division and was a “cash grab” for Joshua, and that the former Olympian should instead focus his efforts on fighting legitimate heavyweight contenders.

“The Hrgovic fight’s big, and that could potentially be for the IBF title”, continued Froch. “The Zhilei Zhang fight, that’s a fight I want to see Anthony Joshua in. We’re getting further and further away from these fights happening if he jumps in there with Ngannou.

“This fight is gonna be acceptable because Ngannou did so well against Fury, but let’s be honest, this is a cash grab out in Saudi Arabia, and I don’t think it’s good for heavyweight boxing.”