Anthony Joshua has assembled a formidable team to assist him in overcoming what his new coach, Robert Garcia, has described as a “mental problem” ahead of his rematch with Oleksandr Usyk.
Garcia would be joining Angel Fernandez to make up AJ’s training team for the second fight with the Ukrainian, but it’s now been revealed that he’s made additional hires.
“A lot of fighters, they come off a loss – like probably after the Andy Ruiz Jr fight – they come off a loss thinking that was never gonna happen,” Garcia said on his YouTube show Robert Garcia Unfiltered.
“So it affected him, it affected him mentally.
“He probably thought, ‘Maybe that’s the end of my career, maybe that’s it,’ so he had a lot of things going on in his mind.
“I think that’s one of the most important things that affected Anthony and that’s what I’m here to change – me and Angel and other help that he’s got.
“He’s created a team of not only me and Angel teaming up, preparing the game plan and training him with the right strategy or the right sparring partners to go out and perform.
“He hired other people that are also very smart.
“Not boxing trainers, just different people that could help with the way he’s thinking.
“Somebody that’s with him, thinking positive with him. Everybody around him is positive.
“Everybody around him is pushing him to his limits, to what he was doing before he lost his first fight.
“He needs to know and believe that he’s still as good, or he’s gonna be even better than he was before he became champion for the first time, when he went out there and was knocking everybody out.”
Garcia continued: “A lot of times when a fighter is so good, so accomplished with a gold medal, two-time heavyweight champion, sometimes then they might get a little too comfortable.
“They might think, ‘I already lost a fight, so maybe I’m not as good?’
“It gets to the head. It’s something that we have to change.
“Because he already did it. He already won the gold medal against the best fighters in the world.
“And then as a pro he also did beat the best to become heavyweight champion of the world.
“We didn’t see that before he lost. After he lost is when we’ve seen that there’s more of a mental problem so we’re working on that.
“We have to push him in training, in sparring.
“The work is gonna be done, he just has to go out there and perform.”