Carl Frampton believes Leo Santa Cruz has made ‘a huge mistake’ agreeing to a rematch against the Belfast fighter.
WBA Featherweight World champion Frampton and Santa Cruz will lock horns once again in the MGM in las Vegas on January after ‘The Jackal’ took the belt off the Mexican in New York in July.
Frampton won the fight in New York on points and he is sure that three weight world champion Santa Cruz has made a bad move in agreeing to face him straight away after losing to him in the summer.
“I think they have made a mistake. I think Mexican pride made him go straight back in at the deep end and say ‘I want that fight again.’
“What he should have done - and what I would have done - was go and get a win.
“I would have gone and beat someone up and got my confidence back and then looked for the rematch.
“I think they are making a big mistake jumping in straight away,” said Frampton.
And Frampton believes he has a physical and mental edge going into the clash at the world famous venue.
“Leo is a confidence fighter and he has always been bigger than his opponents. He started at bantamweight and he must have been huge for the weight.
“He overwhelms people and at super-bantamweight he was overwhelming people.
“Even at featherweight he overwhelmed guys like Abner Mares.
“Leo is taller than me, but I am the bigger man and I will be heavier than him when we get in the ring. And I believe I will be stronger.
“He likes to bully opponents and push them back but he can’t do that with me. He can’t march forward when I am hitting him really hard. And that is the big difference.
And there is another reason Frampton wants to retain his World title.
“I’m hungry to prove to people that the first fight wasn’t a fluke.
“Behind closed doors for this fight I have been performing much better and I have been knocking sparring partners out. I have been hiting people really hard and I believe I will win this fight more convincingly.”