Home News Frank Warren insists Francis Ngannou can BEAT Anthony Joshua, as he hails...

Frank Warren insists Francis Ngannou can BEAT Anthony Joshua, as he hails the ex-UFC champion's 'heart' and predicts an explosive finish to the heavyweight showdown in Saudi Arabia

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  • Francis Ngannou is the clear underdog for his clash with Anthony Joshua
  • Frank Warren believes he can win and has praised Ngannou’s ‘heart’
  • He feels the main event will finish with a knockout on Friday night 

Frank Warren is convinced Francis Ngannou is capable of shocking the world by beating Anthony Joshua in Saudi Arabia on Friday night.

Ngannou will take on Joshua in Riyadh just over four months on from pushing Tyson Fury all the way on his boxing debut before losing a split decision.

The former UFC champion sent Fury to the canvas in the third round of their contest, demonstrating the power that he became renowned for inside the Octagon.

And Hall of Fame promoter Warren feels Ngannou – who is the heavy underdog – has the tools to trouble Joshua and push him onto the back foot to give himself the best chance of getting his hand raised this time.

‘I can see a case for either of them [winning],’ Warren told Mail Sport.

Frank Warren believes Francis Ngannou is capable of beating Anthony Joshua on Friday

Frank Warren believes Francis Ngannou is capable of beating Anthony Joshua on Friday

Joshua is the heavy favourite to beat Ngannou, but Warren hasn't ruled out an upset

Joshua is the heavy favourite to beat Ngannou, but Warren hasn’t ruled out an upset

Warren believes Ngannou is capable of hurting Joshua if he lands cleanly on the Brit

Warren believes Ngannou is capable of hurting Joshua if he lands cleanly on the Brit

‘I just think whoever lands the first meaningful punch… [it’s] how they respond to it. If AJ gets caught, if he catches him and hurts him, I think he’ll fight on the back foot and I don’t think that’s a good thing to do with this guy.’

Joshua also impressed in his last outing as he stopped respected contender Otto Wallin after five rounds in his first fight under new trainer Ben Davison.

Warren admits Joshua looked close to his brutal best in December, but expects Ngannou to offer the Brit a much sterner test than Wallin managed.

‘With the Wallin fight, after a couple of tentative rounds he got into the fight and he did the job he had to do and got himself into the mix again,’ Warren said.

‘Wallin disappointed me in a little way, but then again Joshua didn’t allow him into the fight. But Ngannou’s got more heart that Wallin, so that will be interesting. 

‘Can AJ outbox him, break him down and stop him? Because that’s what he’s got to do.’

Ngannou’s epic battle with Fury went the distance last year, despite both men taking some heavy shots over the 10 rounds.

Warren is adamant there will be no need for the scorecards this time, though, as he has predicted an explosive finish to Friday’s main event.

Ngannou knocked down Tyson Fury on his boxing debut back in October

Ngannou knocked down Tyson Fury on his boxing debut back in October

That fight went to points, but Warren expects Friday's main event to finish with a knockout

That fight went to points, but Warren expects Friday’s main event to finish with a knockout

He has called for Joshua to take the fight to Ngannou or risk coming unstuck.

‘It will be a knockout, I really do feel there’ll be a knockout,’ Warren added. 

‘If he catches AJ will he go back and fight the way he did against Ruiz in the second fight off the back foot? And if he does that, that’s actually not going to be that good for him. 

‘He’s got to come out and he’s got to impose himself on this big man.’