Chris Arreola has vowed to give Joshua nightmares ahead of showdown

From Tyson Fury to Chris Arreola: Anthony Joshua’s rumoured next opponent is a 41-year-old with seven defeats to elite opponents and two drug bans… but AJ must be wary of ‘The Nightmare’ – who has 33 KOs!

  • Chris Arreola is set to be Anthony Joshua’s next opponent after revealing talks 
  • Nearly all of the Mexican’s recent losses have come against top opponents 
  • But he has an impressive knockout rate of 33 KOs that AJ should be wary of 

Anthony Joshua’s potential next opponent gave some big talk when quizzed about a possible showdown between the pair later this year. Considering Chris Arreola is nicknamed ‘The Nightmare’, there was no surprises about the warning he sent.

‘It’s either Joshua or someone else. Whoever it is, they’re going to have a nightmare that day. I’m going to tell you the truth. I’m the type of fighter that loves fighting. I love what I do.’

Confirming negotiations had taken place with Joshua’s team, the American-born Mexican vowed to ‘bring the fight’ to AJ if the pair do get in the ring, despite coming off a loss to Andy Ruiz Jr – who Joshua beat in 2019. 

Anthony Joshua is reportedly set to face Mexican Chris Arreola (right) in his next fight 

‘There are talks and they are trying to figure out if something happens. If it doesn’t happen, it doesn’t matter to me. I’m fighting regardless. I’m fighting in December.

‘I’m getting my butt back in the ring. I was supposed to fight in September. I was supposed to fight in May. Everything keeps getting pushed back. It’s part of boxing. I’m okay with that, but I need to fight this year.

‘I’m grateful to be a big Mexican. I’m grateful to be a heavyweight. I’m grateful to be a fighter. I get paid to fight, and if I’m going to fight, it’s a good thing for me. So if I fight someone like Joshua, I’m going to bring him the fight.

‘I’m going to make sure he knows he’s in a fight. I’m going to make sure he knows that you can hit me, but I’m going to get back up, and we’re going to keep f***en fighting. I’m a dog. There’s dog in me.’

These would be menacing taunts if Arreola hadn’t been coming off two straight losses, adding up to seven career defeats. 

Arreola has vowed to give Joshua ‘nightmares’ in the ring and urged him to accept a fight 

However, the 41-year-old has lost seven times – almost all of them coming against elite fighters

And nearly every one of those losses have come against top level opponents. 

Vitali Klitschko, Bermane Stiverne – twice – Deontay Wilder, Adam Kownacki, Andy Ruiz – as well as Tomasz Adamek.

So despite his bullish prediction, it doesn’t bode too well for the 41-year-old, who must be in the twilight of his nearly 20 years in boxing.

Born as Cristobel Arreola in California to Mexican parents in 1981, he began training with his father at the age of eight before quitting the sport in his late teens to pursue other ambitions. 

He later returned aged 20 and turned professional in 2003 – where he went on to win his first 27 fights. 

Arreola would fight in three world title challenges – all for the WBC belt – and all three of those bouts resulted in a stoppage defeat.

Joshua is looking to gain redemption in his career after two damaging losses to Usyk 

He’s also been involved in controversy during his career. Two of his victories – one in 2011 and another in 2015 – were later declared ‘no decision’ after testing positive for marijuana – serving a 90-day suspension after the latter offence following his win over Travis Kauffman.

He’s certainly facing Joshua at the best possible time after two bruising defeats against Oleksandr Usyk – but the Brit will also be a wounded animal and hungry to get a win back on his record. 

What Arreola does bring is huge experience in the ring after 45 professional bouts.

He is a durable fighter who has only been stopped three times in all of those fights – and his knockout rate is actually incredibly impressive, securing KOs in 33 of his 38 career victories. 

His last knockout came against Jeanpierre Augustin in 2019 – which was his second straight KO after also dispatching Maurenzo Smith the previous year.

But Joshua (left) should be wary of Arreola, who has managed 33 KOs from his 38 career wins 

Arreola has been somewhat inactive in recent years, however. Those two victories came after a two-year absence from the ring following his stoppage defeat to Wilder, and then after losing to Kownacki in the summer of 2018 he didn’t fight again until facing Ruiz in 2021.

He faces yet another two year break from boxing if this fight doesn’t go ahead until the start of 2023, as widely reported.

Joshua will be the comfortable favourite to overcome Arreola should the fight be announced, though the Mexican believes Joshua has weaknesses and could be susceptible to fighters from his nation – having been stopped by Andy Ruiz Jr in 2019 before avenging it later that year. 

‘There could be something there,’ he said. ‘That’s why he went to go get a Mexican trainer because he needed to learn a little Mexican style, do you know what I mean?

‘Just one training camp with a Mexican trainer ain’t going to make you a Mexican fighter, as we’ve seen. The first couple of rounds with him and Usyk looked like he was doing some Mexican thing that he learned from Diaz. But after a while, you go back to your old tricks, and we seen how it went down with Usyk.’

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