Amir Khan wants to fight Goyat, Pacquiao before retirement
ISLAMABAD (APP): British boxer of Pakistan-origin Amir Khan wants to fight India’s Neeraj Goyat and Filipino Manny Pacquiao before retiring from the sport.
Goyat (11-2-2, 2 KOs) holds the WBC Asian welterweight title, and he’s someone that Khan (34-5, 21 KOs) feels would attract a lot of interest from India and Pakistan.
Khan would like to fight Goyat as a warm-up to get him ready for a massive fight against Pacquiao (62-7-2, 39 KOs) next year. But at the same time, Khan is not sure when boxing will restart.
Khan has fought only six times in the last five years. “Maybe one or maybe two,” Khan was quoted as saying by prominent boxing website www.boxingnews24.com
He said he could be retiring after one or two more fights. “I’ve done everything I wanted to do in boxing. And I’ve won world titles, fought at Madison Square Garden, but what’s going to motivate you? I’ve been around and fought the best pound-for-pound fighters. Maybe have one or two fights, and then go into managing young fighters.
“Since it’s been a long time out of the ring, I think I’d go with the WBC Asian champion, which is Neeraj Goyat, and then after him fight Manny Pacquiao and call it a day [retire]. I’d like to fight Goyat because being this long out of the ring, and at the same time being ranked in the top 10 with the WBC, it makes sense to take that fight in Saudi Arabia or wherever. It’s a decent fight.”
“What makes it even bigger is he’s an Indian boxer, and I’m a British Pakistani. It would be even bigger. Politically it would get huge.” There would not be a lot of interest in a Khan vs Goyat fight from UK and American boxing fans so that it would be another low-level clash for him. Khan is coming off of a mismatch against Billy Dib last July in Saudi Arabia, and that fight failed to resonate with fans.
“The Pacquiao fight. That would be a massive fight,” said Khan. “Stylistically, that’s a fight [Pacquiao] that would motivate you and get you up. It’s hard to get switched on now. I remember talking to Manny at the Wildcard. He was around 30 then, and even then, he was finding it hard to motivate himself.
“What he needed was big names to motivate him. Back then, he was fighting the likes of Shane Mosley and Oscar De La Hoya. Big names he was fighting like Cotto. You need that motivation. “I could call it a day now if I wanted to, but I feel like there’s a little bit more left in me. Manny Pacquiao, for me, would be a full complete career that I wanted,” said Khan.
Pacquiao vs. Khan will be a big fight if it happens next year. However, the long layoff could potentially send both fighters into retirement. Pacquiao and Khan both have not fought since last July.
If the sport still has not restarted by July 2021, that would be two years out of the ring for them. Will Khan and Pacquiao want to continue fighting off of a 2-year layoff? It would be asking a lot of them to come back at that point.
“I wanted Mayweather more [than Pacquiao] because I thought, stylistically, it was a better fight,” said Khan. “It’s one of those things. Look, I tried my hardest to get that fight. It’s one of those things. Some fights happen, and some don’t. I wanted to fight them because they’re at the top of the game.
“You want to fight those that are at the top of the ladder. We’ve been up there with the likes of Canelo and Crawford. We have fought the top people. People can say what they want, but I’ve never ducked a fight. I’d jump into the deep water and not care, and take the risk,” said Khan.
“At the same time, I see myself among the top fighters, and I want to fight the top,” said Khan. “I’m still in the top 10 in the world rankings. My name is always being mentioned with Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather. I want to fight the best. I want to fight at 147, and I made the mistake of moving up and down weights,” said Khan.
“I don’t want boxing to retire me. I want to retire before,” said Khan. “And I would fight this summer. The longer I leave it now. My body isn’t like it was 25 or 26. It might be a year before another big sporting even happens again. “So that’s another year out. I just want to wait and see, and it’s hard for me to say at the moment,” said Khan about whether he should retire. It has to be a bigger fight because there’s a high price there at the end of it as well.