Callum Smith says he wants to face Artur Beterbiev at Liverpool’s historic Anfield, but that he’s willing to go abroad if need be.
Smith also spoke with Boxxer about his brother Liam’s fight on Saturday against Chris Eubank Jr, and his thoughts on the style matchup there and with Beterbiev’s upcoming Jan. 28 bout against Anthony Yarde.
On Roy Jones Jr as trainer not fitting Chris Eubank Jr
“Eubank is trying to improve as a fighter under Roy Jones Jr, working on boxing ability because of his lack of amateur experience, but I don’t think the old Eubank is dead, I think he’ll always be able to stand and have a fight with you, and I think he will in this fight.
“He’ll try and box the way Roy Jones wants him to box, being a little bit flashy, but if it does not work — I don’t believe it will — he’ll revert to type and that’s when it becomes exciting.”
On Liam’s matchup with Eubank Jr
“Liam is too smart and too clever for Eubank at the highest level, both had great careers but Liam is that one step further and boxed at slightly higher level than Eubank. Eubank has (a win) over James DeGale but he was on the slide when he fought him, he also stepped up against George Groves and Billy Joe Saunders and came up short.
“I think stylically it’ll be a good fight but Eubank will come up short. They’ll gel pretty well, but the deciding factor will be Liam’s brain and experience at the highest level.”
On facing Beterbiev this year
“I’m in training and hoping to get a date finalised for March, I’m hoping to get it done next week. I’m due to fight the winner of Beterbiev and Yarde. That’s likely to come in August and I don’t want to sit out until the biggest fight of my career, I want to stay active. It’s risky but if I want to become world champion then I should be able to beat anyone else in the meantime.
“Beterbiev is obviously the favourite over Yarde, unless he shows signs of age, he is definitely the favourite. They’re both big punchers, but you’d have to go Beterbiev on what we’ve seen. I’d fight the winner at back end of the summer, hopefully, as Beterbiev does Ramadan.”
“Beterbiev is coming to London to fight Yarde, so maybe he’ll come to Liverpool to fight me. I’m happy to travel to America, I’ve boxed there many times before.
“Hopefully Anfield happens but it’s not as straightforward as people think, you need the right opponent, time of year, they’re doing the stand up so that takes away some of the dates in the summer, so it’s all got to be perfect. Liam and Eubank would have been great there but it’s all about timing. It would be a dream come true, but we’ll have to wait and see.”