22 March 2011 – Jonny Stapleton
John Breen believes Paul McCloskey will help Irish fight fans get over Saturdays double world title disappointment by defeating Amir Khan on April 16.
The Belfast based trainer admits he expected Willie Casey and Brian Magees respective title tilts to fail, but is adamant Ireland will eventually get a new world champion when Dudey dethrones King Khan in their massive WBA title clash. The 2009 Irish trainer of the year revealed it will be third time lucky in the MEN Arena next month and he is confident the European light welterweight champion will become Irelands first World champ since Bernard Dunne.
Breen, who claims training camp is running perfectly, also stressed he thinks Khan is in danger of underestimating the Derry star and confirmed McCloskey is motivated by the chance to increase his legacy not his bank balance. It was a big ask for Brian and Willie on Saturday. I didnt expect either to win. Willie was outclassed and Bute was just to good for Brian on the night. Pauls fight is a bit different though. He shouldnt be an underdog. He is on par with Khan and Ireland will have a new world champion come April 16. We will all be popping the champagne that night, Breen told Mirror Sport.
I have been saying it for years and I am not a bullshit artist. A fit and injury free McCloskey beats Khan every time. I am more than confident Paul will win. Training is going perfect. Paul isnt nervous, he is confident, not arrogant but confident. He knows if he is fit ready and performs he will win the world title, Breen added before hinting Khan could be playing into team McCloskeys hands by underestimating the stylish southpaw.
Khan is already talking about his next fight and July 23. He shouldnt do that. He really shouldnt underestimate Paul McCloskey. We dont mind, but Paul McCloskey doesnt know what it is like to be defeated. He is undefeated for a reason. The Khan fight isnt about money for him. Paul could have held out for a bigger pay day, but he is just looking at beating Khan and becoming a world champ.
Meanwhile, the Irish trainer of the year for 2009 claims another Breen’s Gym resident, Jamie Conlan could be buckling a title around his waist before 2011 is out.
Breen told www.irish-boxing.com that that Conlan, whose younger brother Michael claimed an Irish senior title in February, will trade leather with Martin Power(22-6) in an unofficial British flyweight title eliminator. Breen claims Frank Maloney has already agreed to pit undefeated Conlan in with the former British Bantamweight champion with the winner getting a shot at reigning British flyweight champion Paul Edwards before the year is out.
“We have made a deal with Frank Maloney. Jamie will fight Martin Power in an unofficial title eliminator in April or May. So hopefully by the end of the year Jamie will be challenging for the British title. Jamie is ready for that step up. He hasn’t stop training and he is working toward his next fight. He is a fit kid and willing to listen and learn. We wouldn’t be worried about doing 12 rounds at this stage. Hopefully he and Paul get that bit of luck and become champions this year.”