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Frampton ready for Gonzalez title defence in America debut

Having lit up his hometown of Belfast in recent bouts, spectacularly claiming the IBF super bantamweight title from Kiko Martinez before successfully defending it against Chris Avalos, Carl Frampton is ready for his debut on American soil.

The undefeated 28-year-old has won all 20 of his professional career fights, including 14 by knock-out, but is set for his maiden ring outing in the United States, as he defends the IBF crown against Mexican Alejandro Gonzalez Jnr.

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Frampton, trained by the esteemed former featherweight world champion Barry McGuigan, is 7/2 with Coral to secure a points decision victory, but is gunning for his 15th career stoppage at the Don Haskins Center in Texas.

“First and foremost I want to win but I’d be disappointed not to knock this guy out,” stated Frampton. “There is always pressure on me but I feel I have the power to take out any super-bantamweight in the world.

“He’s tall and he’s rangy and he comes from good pedigree but I have got everything and more to beat him.”

The untoppled Tiger’s Bay champion made his professional debut back in 2009, comprehensively stopping Sandor Szinavel in Liverpool, but has since been somewhat restricted to fight venues in only the UK and Ireland.

Soccer - UEFA Euro 2016 - Qualifying - Group F - Northern Ireland v Faroe Islands - Windsor Park

Although, that will change on Saturday night, as the Northern Irishman prepares to step out in front of a new set of fans in America, but it’s a new challenge ‘the Jackal’ is relishing (odds-on 1/5 to win by KO or TKO).

“It’s a big change and the media attention is more than I expected but it’s another fight and a ring is a ring,” he continued.

“I’m bringing a few fans over. They’ll be outnumbered but they’ll be heard. It’s going to be a good night and it’s up to me to put on a good performance.

“Some people see Gonzalez as an underdog but I don’t see it like that. I see him as another obstacle standing in my way. I’ll have to be at my best to beat him.”

Boxing - Commonwealth Super Bantamweight Championship - Carl Frampton v Prosper Ankrah - Motorpoint Arena

Frampton overcame Avalos in the first defence of his IBF crown in February and had to deal with plenty of trash-talk from his opponent, but his latest foe is a more respectful contender, but a huge underdog nevertheless (20/1 to win by KO or TKO).

“I love it when everything is against me as the pressure is on him. The only time I was made favourite, I lost,” stated Gonzalez.

Gonzalez Snr, also a former featherweight world champion, revealed that his son has spent seven weeks in Los Angeles training for the first time ever, in what is Gonzalez Jnr’s biggest fight of his career.

Boxing - Odyssey Arena

However, ‘La Cobrita’ is confident of securing his 26th career victory in only his second professional bout outside of Mexico, with his previous American match-up coming in June 2012 when he toppled fellow countryman Leopoldo Gonzalez in Texas (14/1 to beat Frampton).

“I believe that I have a good smart boxing brain, I know when to box and when to fight. I have improved my style. I am ready for the way he fights and there are some weaknesses that we have seen that we believe we can get to,” declared Gonzalez Jnr.

Frampton is the massive odds-on 1/50 to triumph on his USA debut and, with plenty of travelling Belfast fans set to roar him on to a second successive title defence, he will aim to showcase his true talents on the grand American stage.