‘Chunky’ believes he will lock horns with Groves again…
James DeGale has insisted that he no longer cares about fighting Carl Froch as he looks ahead to taking on Marco Antonio Periban in Liverpool this weekend.
DeGale defeated Brandon Gonzales at Wembley back in May to establish himself as the mandatory challenger for Froch’s IBF super-middleweight world title, but a bout between the two has not been forthcoming.
While initially suggesting that it would be a fight that he is interested in, Froch has more recently insisted that he would not be motivated by facing the Olympic champion as he continues to chase a fight in Las Vegas.
Nevertheless, DeGale is ignoring the noise from his camp for now as he focuses on Periban, but he insists that he no longer cares about fighting his fellow Brit, and that all that matters is for him to create history by becoming the first British Olympic gold medallist to go on and win a world title.
“It makes me a bit angry because Froch is delaying everything. Really, if he knows he’s going to retire, he could have retired and I could have boxed for the vacant world title, but he is just being awkward.
“Most probably the chance of fighting him is gone but it’s not about Froch, it’s about me chasing my dream of becoming world champion. I don’t care about fighting Froch, I don’t give a f***. I’m mandatory challenger for the IBF title so it’s up to him. Time is running out for him, it’s either box me or vacate the belt next month.
“Basically he’s still making his mind up but he has only got a few weeks left so it’s a waiting game.”
Meanwhile, DeGale added that he believes long-time rival George Groves faces a difficult fight against Anthony Dirrell for the WBC strap, but if both men come through their next tests on Saturday and go on to win world titles, then a rematch is inevitable.
Groves has beaten DeGale both in the amateur ranks and as a professional following their fight back in 2011, but both men have gone on to emerge as top talents in the division and it is highly likely that their paths will cross again next year as they look to unify the belts.
“In the last couple of weeks, Groves is bringing me into it because he knows I will be world champion soon. That fight between me and him will be massive.
“Can you imagine if we both have world titles, with our history, unifying the world titles? It’s going to be interesting and fun over the next six months. It’s inevitable we will meet.
“If I win a world title – and he wins a world title – next summer at Wembley there could be another massive world title fight with two belts on the line.”
Nevertheless, DeGale is not looking beyond this weekend and he insists that he is now injury free and enjoying boxing again as his move to Matchroom looks to be paying dividends.