Anthony Joshua has offered his backing to Josh Warrington both publicly and privately after seeing his shock defeat to Mauricio Lara on Saturday.
Leeds’ former IBF champion suffered a big upset loss to the little-known Mexican – the first of his career.
Warrington started poorly from round one and found himself being caught flush by his unorthodox opponent.
In round four, Lara made the breakthrough as a combination staggered Warrington before a giant left hook sent him crashing to the canvas.
The Leeds man just about rose to his feet and was allowed to continue by referee Howard Foster, despite looking near-certain to be stopped.
The end came in round nine as Lara hurt Warrington again and another huge left hook from the underdog flattened the favourite.
AJ knows all about how this feels, having suffered a similar fate against Andy Ruiz Jr back in 2019.
It is understood that Warrington is now planning on taking the rematch with Lara.
This is exactly what Joshua did against Ruiz, outboxing the Mexican in their second fight to regain his titles.
AJ posted an image on himself talking to Warrington on FaceTime on Wednesday evening and captioned it: “You know what you gotta do. I got your back champ.”
Warrington put up an image from his perspective with the caption: “Boxing school with Anthony Joshua. Lesson number one – Bouncing back after getting KOd by a Mexican. Thanks for the call big man.”
Warrington’s promoter Eddie Hearn said on Wednesday morning: “Josh is good, I mean obviously it was a complete shock.
“He was a big favourite going into the fight, you can see what might’ve gone wrong.
“Was it no fans? Was it the inactivity? Was it complacency? Was it just Lara came out with an unbelievable performance?
“But the reality is I think he’s gonna wanna do it again.
“It’s very dangerous, but that’s the fire in him…
“All the talk at the moment from Josh is he wants to fight Lara again.
“Super risky, but summertime I believe you’ll see Warrington vs Lara II.
“Yes, that one [will be in Leeds], we’ll do it with a crowd this time.”