Eddie Hearn has revealed the list of countries bidding to be the venue to stage Tyson Fury vs Anthony Joshua this summer, and it looks a certainty that the bout will not take place in the UK.
The dream of around 100,000 fans packing Wembley Stadium to see two British world heavyweight champions fighting for the undisputed title appears to be dead in the water with the UK in the grip of a third national lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Instead it seems that if Fury and Joshua are to meet in late May or June as planned, the long-awaited showdown will take place overseas.
Hearn on Fury vs Joshua venue
Hearn told Sky Sports’ Toe2Toe podcast: “We’re talking to Saudi Arabia, we’re talking to Qatar, we’re talking to Dubai, we’re talking to Singapore, we’re talking to China, we’re talking to America.
“Although we all know that everybody would like this fight in the UK, can we say hand on heart that in May we can have 100,000 people in Wembley? I think very unlikely. So therefore to make this fight we need to go somewhere that’s realistic. We need to go somewhere where there’s enough money on the table to make both guys say ‘let’s go’.”
Hearn says negotiations to contractually confirm the fight are going well, and he believes things are “on track” for the fight to happen in early summer as planned.
Fury and Joshua want the fight
He explained: “Again, all I can tell you is that speaking on AJ’s side, he’s training for Tyson Fury. I believe that in Tyson Fury’s mind now, all that’s in his mind is ‘I’m fighting Anthony Joshua next’.
“Yes AJ against Usyk is a great fight. Tyson Fury against Deontay Wilder 3 is a good fight. But let’s be honest, it will be a letdown for everybody if we don’t see that fight (Fury vs Joshua) next.”
Fury and Joshua last summer agreed in principle the financial structure for a two-fight deal. The first bout will be a 50-50 revenue split, with the winner taking a 60-40 upside for the rematch.