David Haye is plotting a clash with old sparring partner Deontay Wilder down the line as his boxing comeback gathers pace.

The 34-year-old has been out of the ring since July 2012, when he stopped Dereck Chisora in the fifth round of a thrilling clash at Upton Park, the home of West Ham Football Club.

Two fights against Tyson Fury have fallen through since then, and Haye's career looked to be under threat when he had surgery on a serious shoulder injury towards the end of 2013.

Haye revealed last summer that he was plotting a comeback and, although it continues to be delayed, he is adamant he will box again and thinks a world title shot is possible by the end of next year.

Haye told the Daily Mail: "Yes you will see me back in the ring. I've been taking it easy of late as obviously I had a bad shoulder injury so I needed reconstructive surgery on it.

"That's good now, I've got all the movement back and I'm banging harder than ever with that. I'm just surveying the land at the moment and seeing what's happening out there.

"The heavyweight division is looking as good as it has done for a long time. You've got Wladimir Klitschko still doing what he does, you've got the emergence of Deontay Wilder, the WBC champion, big guy, perfect record. He just had a great win and I was in Vegas when he fought Bermane Stiverne. He looked like the real deal, he really did.

"He helped me out in the past with sparring so I know him very well and I think that has really spiced up the heavyweight division.

"I think a great route would be to go to America and try to navigate a way to the WBC title. Deontay Wilder is a very good champion and if i start fighting regularly I am probably a year or 18 months away from being in a mandatory position to fight him.

"I'm not stupid and I don't think I will just jump straight in there.

"I think it would be disrespectful to the champions and a bit idiotic of myself to think that just because three years ago I could fight at a good level I can just come straight back. Not even Usain Bolt can take three years out and come straight in and expect to beat the world."