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Khan vs Murray to be signed


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Amir Khan and John Murray are on the verge of agreeing the biggest fight in Manchester’s history.


MEN Sport can exclusively reveal that undefeated Denton-based European lightweight champion Murray is being considered for Khan’s defence of his WBA light-welterweight crown on April 16.


The Battle of Britain would take place at the MEN Arena and is expected to generate even more interest than David Haye’s world heavyweight title clash with Audley Harrison at the same venue last November.


Khan’s US promoter, Golden Boy, are keen to make the fight happen after the breakdown in negotiations with Lamont Peterson, and Sky TV are also understood to have given the green light to the pay-per-view potential of the clash.


All that is left now is for Khan to put pen to paper for the biggest all-Manchester bout of all time to get the go-ahead.


Golden Boy’s chief match-maker, Roberto Diaz, said: “Richard Schaefer (Golden Boy CEO) has spoken to Khan’s people and told them that John Murray is interested and ready and willing to fight.


“He’s waiting to hear from them.


“There are a couple of possibilities being considered, but Murray has been added to that list.


“It would be a big fight in Manchester and there would be interest in the States as well. Murray is undefeated – 30-0 – and although he hasn’t had the exposure out here, he is highly ranked.”


Khan hopes to fight pound-for-pound great Floyd Mayweather Jr next year, but is coming under increased pressure to find a credible opponent for his UK homecoming.


After conquering America in 2010, he wants to return to these shores with a bang.


Despite talking up clashes with Victor Ortiz and Peterson, he was most recently in negotiations with European light-welterweight champion, Paul McCloskey.


But that wouldn’t come close to capturing the public’s imagination like a war with Murray.


The 26-year-old from Levenshulme has built up a cult following in Manchester and is seen by his army of loyal fans as the natural successor to Ricky Hatton.


Khan’s manager Asif Vali confirmed that Murray is being considered.


“There have been a number of opponents offered and we are looking at them,” he said. “We have to make sure that whoever is offered to us is at the right price. Amir is at a world level now whereas John Murray is nowhere near that level.


“There is also the issue that any fight has to be approved by broadcasters.”


That should not be a problem with both Sky and HBO hoping for an all-British showdown that can erase the bitter memories of the Haye-Harrison farce.


While Khan-Murray wouldn’t be able to replicate the 42,000 who packed Old Trafford to watch Chris Eubank and Nigel Benn in 1993 – it is undoubtedly the biggest clash between two Manchester fighters.


Murray’s trainer Joe Gallagher insists he won’t let the fans down if he gets his shot.


“It is a fight that could have happened years ago, but now that Amir is world champion and John is European champion, it will be even bigger.


“Amir knows he doesn’t have to look too far to find an opponent for the MEN – there’s one right on his doorstep.


“We are honoured just to be considered and it would be a great opportunity for John.


“If ever they were going to get in the ring, now is the time. Amir is talking about moving up to welterweight and John still wants to become world champion at lightweight. This opportunity might not come around again.


“And if John does get his chance, I promise he will do a better job than Harrison managed against Haye.”


Who would win - Khan or Murray?

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I just don't see Murray as a world class fighter. I can't see him even making it competitive to be honest.


What Murray lacks in natural talent, he makes up for with heart and a decent amount of raw talent.

This match should have happened when Khan was coming through the ranks, but it's interesting to see the difference in success each man has had, despite Murray being the one who has remained unbeaten.

I think Murray will give him a tough night, but I couldn't discount Khan walking the fight either.

Would have been a big domestic fight, but now that a world title is on the line, and a not undeserving shot has been awarded to Murray, I'm sure he'll make it count.

He showed against McAllister that he can cope with speed and accuracy, and despite Khan being a good few grades beyond Lee, and the fact he can also hit harder, I think Murray knows what to expect and will be more than ready to give it his all.

I like this bout 10 x more than a McCloskey bout.

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Re: Khan vs Murray to be signed


...expected to generate even more interest than David Haye’s world heavyweight title clash with Audley Harrison at the same venue last November.


Who would win - Khan or Murray?


Anything has to be better than the disaster that was Haye v's Harrision. It's a fight that Khan should win, but can only be a step in the right direction for the name of world championship boxing in the UK.

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Like this fight, I always thought it should have been made before Khan stepped up to World level, but uncle Frank didn't want any of Murray or Thaxton for that matter.


I think a lot of people underestimate Murray. I agree Khan has the edge and would be a big favourite in this fight, but Murray is a warrior and fights in a similar mould to the come forward mexican fighters. He has a tight guard but can sometimes be caught, he has decent power and digs in with good body shots! He is a very hungry and determined lad.


I think it would be a good, solid fight. I would be looking at ticket prices with a view to attending this one if it gets made.

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Ah well, looks like it's back to McCloskey.

Pretty disappointed to be honest, after all the names being banded about.

Seems like it was all a smokescreen yet again.

Of everyone mentioned, this has to be the only fight I'm not really interested in...



WBA light-welterweight champion Amir Khan looks set to defend his title against the European champion Paul McCloskey.

Negotiations between the two camps have been taking place for over a fortnight and BBC Sport understands McCloskey has agreed in principle to fight Khan.

Official confirmation of the bout is expected by the weekend.

If it is given the go-ahead, it is likely to take place at the MEN Arena in Manchester on 16 April.

Last week, Khan's father Shah said that an offer had been made to McCloskey from Dungiven.

"It is up to them to decide whether to accept it," Khan told the BBC.

"We have offered him almost three times what he got paid for his last fight and the ball is in their court - it can happen if they agree to the terms."

At that stage hopes of a contest between the two fighters appeared to be receding but there is now renewed belief that the bout could be back on.

Khan has stated his aim of unifying the division this year. He wants to fight the winner of the forthcoming bout between the US fighters Timothy Bradley and Devon Alexander on 29 January.

The 31-year-old McCloskey is unbeaten in 22 fights. He won the European crown by defeating Spain's Daniel Rasilla in 2009 and has defended his belt twice.

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Good for Khan. I think he needs to stay busy until he can attract a big fight. The good thing about him is he can sell tickets in the UK and still get a decent payday no matter who he fights.


Personally, I would say that's a bad thing for boxing fans.

McCloskey isn't a bad opponent, but style-wise this will be a cakewalk for Khan.

What happened to Marquez? Judah? Prescott? Murray? Even Peterson and Ortiz were better fights imo.

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