Eddie Hearn, promoter for former two-time heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua, is expecting a deal to get done for a showdown with Deontay Wilder, who previously held the WBC world title.

The contest is being targeted to take place on date in January in Saudi Arabia.

According to Hearn, the only way Wilder-Joshua will fall through is if Skill Challenge Promotion of Saudi Arabia fails to deliver the necessary funds to make the event a reality.

“[I think it will be finalized in] two or three weeks," Hearn told Fight Hub TV. “I’ve been to Saudi Arabia twice to negotiate this fight. I’ve had two meetings, three meetings in London. I’m not doing it for banter. My instructions from Anthony Joshua [are] ‘I want to fight Deontay Wilder.’ The only way this fight doesn’t happen is if Saudi doesn’t deliver the fight.

“[Wilder manager] Shelly Finkel, Wilder, as far as I’m hearing from them directly, they are in. We are in. We just need to sign a contract and go through the procedures to get that done.”

Joshua saw action twice in 2023. For both fights, he had veteran trainer Dereck James in his corner.

In April, he picked up a twelve round unanimous decision win over Jermaine Franklin. Then earlier this month, he picked up a seventh round knockout over late replacement Robert Helenius.

If the deal to face Wilder falls apart, then Joshua will look to fight for a third time this year in the month of December.

“If it doesn’t happen, I think [Joshua will] fight in December. But I’m not spinning that fight. All of our efforts have been for that fight," Hearn said.

"Honestly I wouldn’t waste my time flying all around the world trying to pretend that that’s the fight we want. That is the fight we want. It’s a massive fight, massive money, and that is what I have been instructed to deliver for AJ. We are positive. Like I said, we are in. If it can be delivered, we are in.”