Eddie Hearn, promoter for IBF, IBO, WBA, WBO heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua, says the British superstar is dead set on fighting in 2020.
Joshua has been out of the ring since December of 2019, when he won back his world titles with a twelve round unanimous decision over Andy Ruiz in Saudi Arabia.
Right now the return is being targeted for December, even if it means to stage the event without spectators.
"AJ wants to fight this year and he will fight," Hearn told the Sun.
"Hopefully by December we will be in a situation where we can have a full, or close-to-full, O2. Because when you talk about no crowds causing a hole in budgets, his is around £5 million. But he will fight, he has to, otherwise it will be a year out of the ring. We have to get him back in 2020.
"I would put him on behind closed doors now, yes. The numbers wouldn't be as good but he is prepared to do it."
Joshua's opponent is the IBF's mandatory challenger Kubrat Pulev. They were scheduled to fight back in June, with the event being pushed back due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The goal is to get past Pulev and then face WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury, who himself has to overcome a trilogy fight with Deontay Wilder in the fall.
"Right now, the plan is still to fight Pulev, as he is the mandatory challenger," Hearn said.
"But this situation has put everything up in the air and there are a lot of moving parts. Joshua wants to fight Fury but he wants the WBC belt more."