Carl Frampton believes he is finally closing in on a massive showdown with domestic rival Scott Quigg.
Matchroom chief Eddie Hearn – who manages Quigg –admitted this week that a fight between the two “was closer than ever”.
And now IBF World champion Frampton has backed up that statement.
Negotiations have been ongoing since both fighters won their last fights in July, and now talks are at an advanced stage to get the pair in the ring early next year.
“There are still a few things to be overcome and the talks have started again and the fight is closer than it ever has been,” Frampton said.
“I don’t want to say too much as we are the opposite of Eddie Hearn as we don’t like to broadcast everything in public. We like to keep talks and deals in private and that is the way we want to keep it, but I agree we are very close to being made.
“We are all confident that the fight can be made; Hearn is confident. I have not heard from Quigg but I hope he sees sense and we get the fight on.
“It’s a huge fight, a massive fight and it gives him a chance – even though he is going to lose – to get in the limelight.”
And the Tigers Bay super-bantamweight World champion believes he has the beating of his biggest rival – but not in Manchester.
“I am the champion and should not have to travel to Manchester to Quigg’s backyard,” Frampton added.
Frampton’s trainer Shane McGuigan also believes the fight can finally happen.
“The fight is genuinely the closest it has been to being made and I am very excited about the fight being made because I believe Carl will smash him up,” he said.
“I have no doubt about that and I see it as another platform to bigger unification fights and bigger fights down the line and amybe moving up in weight.
“And Carl could even have a showdown with Lee Selby in a few years if he keeps going well.”
Matchroom chief Hearn said earlier this week: “The McGuigans are now telling me that they want to get it done so I honestly believe that the Frampton fight will be made.
“I’ve had some positive discussions with them and all that it will take to get it made is a couple of percent for money, it’s that close.
“We’ve moved our stance so I’m hoping they can move too, and if they can then this can be made instantly.
“I think everyone is understanding the landscape a bit more as both camps are saying that they don’t like their other options.”