Nathan Cleverly admits he is already eyeing a rematch with British rival Tony Bellew.
The former world champion takes on Alejandro Valori on Saturday night at the Echo Arena in Liverpool but is already hoping for another fight with Bellew - and says he will beat him again.
Cleverly beat Bellew in a world-title fight in October 2011 but lost his WBO light-heavyweight belt to Russian Sergey Kovalev in Cardiff last August.
He, like Bellew, is now fighting at cruiserweight and the Welshman is eyeing a good performance this weekend before a fight with the Liverpudlian and then a shot at the world title.
"I believe at the end of this year, or probably at the start of 2015, I will be in line for a shot at the world title,” said Cleverly. “I want to get this job done on Alejandro Valori and then first and foremost it is important I win that fight in good fashion.
"Then we will look for that big domestic grudge match between myself and Bellew and when I bash him up we will be looking for the world-title fight then."
The 27-year-old added: "I think it is realistic that my next fight after Valori will be Bellew. It is a big fight and maybe it should happen sooner rather than later – strike while the iron is hot. We are both fresh at the weight and if all goes well after Saturday we will both be coming off two wins in the weight division. It would be the type of fight where the winner goes on the fight for the world title.
“I have no issue with wherever the fight is going to take place, it is wherever will work best promotional wise. I will let Matchroom and Sky Sports see where they feel it will be best to get the best venue with the best capacity and I am prepared to go wherever.
"It is something we will discuss after the weekend. To have the home crowd backing and do it in Wales would be a bonus but realistically I think it will be in a big arena. Liverpool is possible and Manchester and London are possible too. We will see what happens."
The outcome of that 2011 fight was disputed by Bellew but Cleverly insists the majority points decision was correct.
“My verdict on the first fight was that I was 24 years of age, I went into his home town, defending my world title and I successfully did that. There is no question in my mind, I certainly won the fight and the verdict was there, that was the final result.
"But he feels bitter at the loss, he wants his revenge, but ultimately I want the rematch because I want to not just win the rematch but I want to win emphatically, and I feel I will do that in the next fight.
“I think the new weight will suit both of us better. I feel we will be stronger, have more energy, more power, so I think the fight will be a replica of the first fight but a lot more explosive with the added weight."
“Liverpool has been a good hunting ground for me, I have had three title fights in Liverpool and they have all been successful. I have no issue with fighting in Liverpool and this is a good venue, a great arena. Ultimately my bitter rival is from here, this is his hometown, but I have no problem with fighting here and I am actually looking for to it.
“I am not expecting to come out to cheers or hear people getting right behind me. It might be a little bit hostile at times with the rival supporters but that can fuel my ambition as well and motive me. I will turn that into a positive.
Olympic gold medallists stars Anthony Joshua and Luke Campbell both fight on the undercard on Saturday, Joshua facing veteran Matt Skelton while Campbell’s opponent has yet to be confirmed. Anthony Ogogo, a bronze-medal winner at London 2012, faces Sheffield’s Wayne Reed.
Tags: Nathan Cleverly , Tony Bellew , Cleverly-Bellew , Cleverly vs Bellew