Former striker Bilel Jkitou has offered to play up front for Coventry City FC this Saturday after he has beaten WBC Silver Middleweight Champion Sam Eggington the night before.
And the unbeaten French hitman has the backing of his superstar friend the Real Madrid and France striker Karim Benzema.
Jkitou challenges Eggington for his crown at the Coventry Skydome Arena this Friday night, but the former Red Star forward is happy to swap his gloves for boots again and turn out at home for the Sky Blues, who are 7th in the Championship, against Middlesborough.
Before Jkitou switched to professional boxing he played as a striker for Red Star, the oldest league football club in Paris, and the sharpshooter scored 15 times in one season.
He has equaled his football prowess in the squared circle with an unbeaten 15-fight record and 6 knockouts and has captured the WBC Mediterranean Middleweight title as he heads into the biggest fight of his career against the Birmingham ‘Savage’ Eggington.
The 29-year-old has been in top form with back-to-back KO’s in his last three fights. In his last fight in March he destroyed Gyorgy Mizsei inside two rounds; prior to that in February last year he smashed Felice Moncelli in the opening round and Ernesto Olvera was dispatched in eight rounds in October 2019.
Jkitou said, “It was a real pleasure for me to play and grow at Red Star, a club so prestigious in France for its level and its history. I scored about 15 goals in one season at Red Star. When I beat Eggington and take his title and while I’m still in the city before I go home I’d be happy to help out Coventry City against Middlesbrough
“Karim wanted to come to see the fight but with the Covid and the fact that he plays often complicates matters. Karim and I met on social networks he is passionate about boxing, he liked what I did and he wrote to me and since then our friendship is very healthy, we give advice to each other, we encourage each other. I also had to go see him in Madrid but the Covid has complicated all these trips, but it will be done very soon. Regarding the fight against Sam he encouraged me to win,"
He has also played alongside some other big French stars including former Spurs and Marseille winger Georges-Kévin Nkoudou.
He added, “I played with Nkoudou who played at Marseille and for Spurs in England, who now plays at Besiktas. Yacine Bammou who played in Nantes and with the national team of Morocco. I played with Abdoulaye Diaby who played in Lille, Bruges, Besiktas. Mario Lemina, he is also a friend, we come from the same neighborhood.”
Jkitou says he has transferred all the qualities of a striker such as accuracy, speed, strength and confidence to being a boxer and will use them to defeat against Eggington. He finished, "Yes exactly I am a striker in football but also in boxing and you will see that on September 10 in Coventry.”