Anthony Joshua 'took his eye off the ball' and 'wasn’t fully dedicated' to boxing due to sponsorships, Carl Froch says | The Sun

CARL FROCH claimed Anthony Joshua "took his eye off the ball" and "wasn’t fully dedicated" to boxing due to focussing on sponsorships.

The heavyweight superstar is fighting to revive his career following consecutive losses to pound-for-pound star Oleksandr Usyk.

AJ returns on April 1 at the O2 Arena against Jermaine Franklin, 29, and has relocated to Dallas in preparation under new trainer Derrick James.

Joshua, 33, was formerly coached in Sheffield by Rob McCracken, who was Froch's long-time cornerman.

And the former super-middleweight champion believes AJ may have become too distracted, leading to his recent downfall.

Froch, 45, told BonusCodeBets: “Don’t get me wrong, I haven’t been around the camps, but looking at his performance and listening to him beforehand – it must be hard, he’s made a lot of money, a lot of commercial pressures, a lot of sponsorship outside, he’s doing adverts for Under Armour, Lucozade, Beats, Hugo Boss.

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"These blue chip companies are behind him and brings massive pressure.

"I just think he took his eye off the ball, off the boxing game. He wasn’t fully dedicated to his sport.

"He’s got to get up and do the runs. Marvin Hagler said it’s hard to get out of bed when you’re wearing silk pyjamas.”

Froch wants to see Joshua return to the same fighter beat Wladimir Klitschko, 46, in their 2017 thriller.

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He said: “If AJ can go back to that fighter who climbed off the canvas against Wladimir Klitschko and then sent him into orbit with that uppercut, if he can rediscover his finisher’s instinct, and go back to using his size and combinations, he can still be a threat to anyone at heavyweight.

"If he can set his mind right and banish the ghosts of Ruiz and Usyk, he has a chance to get back to the top of the mountain – but it’s a big ask.

"He’s been a great ambassador for British boxing, only time will tell what he has left.”

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