FRANCIS NGANNOU is still dreaming of fighting Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua – but draws the line on idol Mike Tyson.
The newly crowned UFC champion first set his sights on a boxing career aged 22.
But after immigrating to France, he instead embarked on an MMA career as it was easier to find fights.
Fast-forward 12 years and Ngannou is the UFC heavyweight king after knocking out Stipe Miocic.
Miocic, 38, previously revealed he would never face Tyson, but was open to challenging boxing champions AJ or Fury.
And Ngannou similarly could never fight his hero Iron Mike, but still has the desire to achieve his goal of reaching the boxing summit.
He told TMZ Sports: “I’m in the same spot as Stipe as well.
“I don’t want to fight Mike Tyson but I would like to fight other heavyweights such as Tyson Fury. Absolutely, I’m open to that.
“Remember, boxing was my primary dream and I still have the fire and the dream inside me and I believe that at some point I’m going to make the step.”
Ngannou, 34, is being primed as the UFC’s version of Tyson, a fearsome puncher capable of captioning the wider publics attention.
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And the Cameroonian star beams as he talks about the comparisons with boxing’s youngest heavyweight champ of all time.
Ngannou said: “Every time that they compared me to Mike Tyson, you know for me it’s just an honour that they can attach my name to somebody like Mike Tyson.
“Growing up, hearing about Mike Tyson, even though I didn’t have a chance to see him fight because I was in a small village and we didn’t have a TV and stuff.
“It was very hard for us to have access of those stuff but as soon as I had a chance I just go on YouTube and keep watching Mike Tyson tape and I was so impressed by him and was just dreaming to become like him.”