Boxing News

CALLUM SMITH’S ANFIELD DREAM IN DOUBT

Callum Smith looks set to miss out on an opportunity for a homecoming fight at Anfield for the foreseeable future, but the WBA “super” champion could turn his attention to unifying the division against Caleb Plant or Gilberto Ramirez.

Smith who recently reigned victorious over George Groves in Jeddah had plans to make the first defence of his title at the home of Liverpool Football Club, but these ambitious plans for the 28-year-old seem to have been dashed due to the high cost of hiring the 54,000 seated venue, and the unavailability of big-name opponents.

A different route will now be mapped out and discussed when the Merseysider sits down with promoter Eddie Hearn, the newly crowned winner of the Mohammad Ali trophy will most likely set his sights on either the IBF champion Caleb Plant, or WBO title holder Ramirez.

Trainer Joe Gallagher, who is also the manager of the Liverpudlian has been quoted as saying. “It looks like there’s going to be no Anfield show for Callum Smith this year. As far as Anfield, we’re in the middle of January now, and there’s been no discussions, so that looks like it’s off the table now.

“Plan B, we’ve got to sit down with Eddie, and see what the next step is for Callum Smith, whether it’s The O2, Manchester Arena, Las Vegas.

“Obviously Caleb Plant won the world title at the weekend, a unification fight there is something we’re looking at. Gilberto Ramirez is another option we’re looking at, and they’re the type of fights we want Callum Smith to be involved in.

“Everyone can see there are Canelo-GGG talks going on in May, so for a fight to happen in Anfield, really it would have to be a big name.

“Andre [Ward], he’s like ‘The Riddler’ out of the Batman films, he keeps teasing people everybody. He knows our feelings and he knows that’s the fight. It’s only those type of personnel, high-profile fighters that could get a football stadium.”

Smith rose to stardom and became top dog of the division when he won the World Boxing Super Series back in September, producing an epic knockout win over fellow Brit and rival George Groves.

With a number of his Super-Middleweight counterparts sharing the ring in the upcoming months, ‘Mundo’ is eager to get back into action and make his first appearance back into the squared circle for 2019.

“We’re looking to get Callum Smith out in May,” said Gallagher. “I want Callum Smith out early May, back end of May, and that’s it. In a big fight, that’s what we want, have a Ramirez or a Plant.

“There’s a lot of action going on in the super-middleweights. [Anthony] Dirrell is coming up as well, obviously you’ve got the DeGale-Eubank fight. There’s lots of action going on, we just want to know we’ve got an opponent.”

By Kenny Leavett.

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