CARL FROCH has told Anthony Joshua to forget about an Oleksandr Usyk rematch unless he rips up his gameplan and returns to being a bully.
Despite his height, reach and 19lbs weight advantage AJ, 31, failed to impose himself on the 34-year-old former cruiserweight.
The Watford ace surrendered his WBA, IBF and WBO titles to the Ukraine master, without even going hell-for-leather in the final few rounds when he must have sensed it was slipping away.
An instant rematch is being targeted for February but Froch - who had his brilliant super-middleweight world title career guided by AJ mentor Rob McCracken - needs to see a totally new approach or a devastatingly similar result..
“I thought AJ would get going and impose his advantages more,” he said
“The bigger size and reach and 19lbs.
“If you want to beat a top boxer you don’t box him, you fight him, don’t play them at their own game because then you give them all the advantages.
“AJ did that, he tried to box with Usyk and he is too good. I would have liked a stronger start from AJ but Usyk is a magician.
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“He can start quicker and stronger in the rematch and get rough but the way Usyk finished the fight worries me because he could have relaxed and instead he took him on and tried to finish him.
“That told me he did to show him what could be coming in the rematch
“What a fighter Usyk is, I have to say I don’t fancy AJ in the rematch, he has to seriously change his tactics and his gameplan and get rough early.
“Apparently he has said he wants the rematch straight away but I think he needs to sleep on it and look over at what he did wrong and what he can improve on.”
Ice-cool Usyk claims he and his corner never even hit top gear to land the stoppage, preferring to put on a Tottenham clinic.
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But in the final few seconds of the 12th round he definitely fancied a KO and pummelled AJ once he was pinned to the ropes.
Now the multimillionaire needs to assess if he really still has the desire to go to the well and overcome this boogieman.
Froch added: “I didn’t think AJ would lose like that, I never saw it coming that way because the ending was a bit of a beating.
“I am sure Joshua can come again but it depends how much he wants it because he has achieved so much and done so well.
“I do think Anthony Joshua can win the rematch, he does have the physicality, but he needs different tactics and gameplan, he needs to implement his size and stature a lot more and a lot earlier.”