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Anthony Joshua has warned Tyson Fury that he will take his “head off his shoulders” if the pair go toe-to-toe next year. Promoters Eddie Hearn, Frank Warren and Bob Arum are currently working on making the blockbuster bout between the two heavyweight champions.

Joshua successfully defended his WBA, WBO, IBF and IBO belts with a ninth-round knockout of Kubrat Pulev earlier this month.

The 31-year-old only needs to add Fury’s WBC strap to his collection to unify the heavyweight division.

AJ apparently got the better of Fury in sparring a decade ago while he was an up-and-coming amateur – a performance which earned him the Gypsy King’s Rolex.

“He said ‘if you can beat me up or knock me out, you can have my Rolex watch’,” Joshua told the Mirror.

“All I wanted was his Rolex watch. I was hungry then and I’m even hungrier now.

“That’s what I did to him then. It was a good spar. I was 20 and didn’t really know too much.

“I fought with just passion. Now I have some boxing IQ and passion and I know it will be a great fight.

“There was a Rolex then, but now there is an even bigger pot of gold at the end of this rainbow and I want to take his head off his shoulders when that fight happens.

“I’m serious about the fight so when I announce it, you’ll know it’s real.”

Boxing fans have called for Joshua and Fury to clash for the past few years and their wish is edging ever closer.

Both fighters have verbally agreed to a straight split of the purse but Joshua is not getting carried away until the pre-fight festivities commence.

“I’m saving all of that for the first press conference,” said Joshua. “With the UKAD situation, every win he’s had has had drama around it.

“Whether it was to do with Klitschko, Wilder, there is always drama.

“I’m a straight-up warrior, I just want to fight him. I don’t care about anything in his body.

“He knows about my uppercut, he knew about it from when I was 20 years old.

“Trust me, he knows what’s coming.”

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