WBA welterweight world champion Manny Pacquiao feels confident that he can unseat WBC, IBF champion Errol Spence in a high stakes unification clash.
Pacquiao has been away from the ring since July of 2019, when he captured the WBA title with a twelve round split decision win over unbeaten Keith Thurman at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
The coronavirus pandemic has prevented the 42-year-old Pacquiao from returning to the ring in 2020.
He aims to fight again in 2021 – against Spence or potentially UFC superstar Conor McGregor.
Spence retained his titles last month, when he returned to the ring with a dominant twelve round decision over Danny Garcia in Texas.
After studying his recent performance, Pacquiao believes Thurman is a quicker fighter.
“He [Spence] is too slow,” Pacquiao told Josef Ramos of BusinessMirror when discussing Spence’s comeback win over Garcia.
“Spence is slower than Thurman but it’s going to be a good fight.”
Sean Gibbons, President of MP Promotions, is not convinced Spence is the same fighter after suffering injuries in a bad car accident in 2019.
“I think Spence lost a step from the accident,” said Gibbons. “It’s a difficult fight but I think, yes [Pacquiao will beat Spence].”
McGregor has been calling for a fight with Pacquiao – and the two athletes are now represented by the same management company.
While Spence would be a high profile option, the eight division world champion appears to be more interested in a clash with McGregor.
“[Spence and McGregor are] my options, but right now I want to experience fighting an MMA [mixed martial artist],” said Pacquiao. “I will also donate a big portion of my income to Filipino COVID-19 victims.”