Deontay Wilder reaches ‘verbal agreement’ to fight Francis Ngannou as ex-UFC champ eyes blockbuster in Africa

FRANCIS NGANNOU revealed he has a “verbal agreement” to fight Deontay Wilder – which is being eyed for Africa.

Ngannou is a free agent after leaving the UFC following a breakdown in contract negotiations.

AFPFrancis Ngannou revealed he has a ‘verbal agreement’ to fight Deontay Wilder[/caption]

GettyDeontay Wilder is in talks to fight Francis Ngannou[/caption]

And the Cameroonian confirmed he is eyeing a boxing switch and has held talks to face Anthony Joshua.

But it is American star Wilder, 37, who Ngannou, 36, is deepest in conversations with.

And they could look to fight in Africa next year on the 50th anniversary of Muhammad Ali’s Rumble in The Jungle.

Ngannou told ESPN: “Yes we’ve been having some exchanges.

“We’ve basically come into some sort of verbal agreement that we want to fight each other. We want two fights.

“Maybe one of those fights in Africa, maybe two of them in Africa. Which would be massive – which would be great.

“I think August next year is the 50th anniversary of the Rumble in the Jungle and I think that would be an opportunity to do something massive in Africa.”

Ali beat George Foreman in 1974 in Zaire, one of boxing’s most iconic fights.


Wilder has offered to face Ngannou in both the ring and cage as part of a two-bout deal.

But Ngannou prefers to instead just box and could eye October 2024 for their proposed rematch on the anniversary of the Rumble.

He said: “We are looking around that timeline for the potential second fight. Which, in my opinion, should still be in boxing.

“Boxing is a new challenge, but remember, at the beginning, MMA was just as challenging as boxing – if not bigger.

“So, I don’t back down from challenges.” 

Deontay Wilder pictured with Francis Ngannou at the UFC’s training facility

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