Callum Smith's WBC title clash with Anthony Dirrell on verge of being finalised
By Dev Trehan
Last Updated: 11/04/17 6:19pm
Callum Smith’s WBC world super-middleweight title fight against Anthony Dirrell could be confirmed within days, trainer Joe Gallagher says.
Smith is set to battle Dirrell for the vacant title, which was relinquished by Badou Jack, who decided to step up to light-heavyweight following his draw against James DeGale in January.
Dirrell is bidding to reclaim the title he lost to Jack in 2015 and Gallagher knows his man faces a difficult task, particularly with the fight likely to take place in Dirrell's home state of Michigan.
"We're nearly over the line with negotiations," Gallagher told Sky Sports News HQ.
"I think contracts should be signed this week and we're probably looking at the back end of May or early June for that fight.
"It looks like we will most probably have to go over to Detroit or Flint, Michigan. That's what we're talking about at the moment.
"Anthony Dirrell is a very, very good fighter and a very good puncher and is highly motivated.
"He's got a world title opportunity in his own back garden and I'm sure he'll want to become a two-time world champion as much as Callum Smith wants to become a world champion."
Gallagher was speaking at a press conference where another Liverpudlian, Natasha Jonas, announced she is to return to the ring and join the paid ranks as a professional fighter.
Jonas has joined Gallagher's stable of fighters which also includes Anthony Crolla, and the 2015 Ring Magazine Trainer of the Year says Crolla has plenty of options for his next fight, following back-to-back defeats to Jorge Linares.
"He [Crolla] is coming up with me this weekend for the Ricky Burns fight. We've got [Scott] Cardle on the bill so he's helping me out up there," Gallagher said.
"There are a few options on the table for him, including a trip to Vegas to fight on Linares' undercard and there's also talk of a Ricky Burns fight.
"There are a few options out there but after Glasgow, Anthony has to go on holiday then come back and see what offers are on the table."