Roach - It's down to me
Freddie Roach says it was HIS decision to fight Marco Antonio Barrera - and admits it is a gamble for Amir Khan.
Last Updated: 13/03/09 10:15am
Freddie Roach says it was HIS decision to fight Marco Antonio Barrera.
The legendary trainer is taking full responsibility for Saturday night's massive showdown at the MEN Arena, which sees Amir Khan taking a massive step up in class.
And although Roach's predecessor, Jorge Rubio, was axed from his post for picking Breidis Prescott as the perfect opponent, he is happy that he has made the right decision.
"It was my decision, 100 per cent," he told Sky Sports.
"Frank Warren, they all liked the offer and gave me a call. I said 'give me a couple of days', I thought about it, the pros and cons - then I accepted it.
"I do know how to beat this guy, I beat him twice with (Manny) Pacquiao."
Roach also admits that if Khan loses, he has nowhere left to go.
But he is so confident in the fact that Barrera is not at his best, neither in terms of age or weight - he is moving up to lightweight for the first time at the age of 35 - that he will not go the same way as Rubio.
Providing, that is, Khan has learned his lesson from the 54-second blow-out by Prescott.
"It is that dangerous," he said. "We've been watching the tape and and if he makes the same mistakes with the fight against Prescott, it will all be over because Barrera knows how to stay in the pocket and he knows when to throw his punches.
"If we make the same mistake again - which I know he will be looking for - the fight could be over. But I don't expect that to happen.
"Sometimes I think about it myself and I get a little worried. When I see Amir make a young man's mistake sometimes, I think 'do that in the fight and you're going to have trouble'.
"I lay in bed a lot at night thinking about the fight and making sure everything's covered, but I also worry sometimes. But at the end of my scenarios I'm going through, I always come out with Amir on the winning end because of his skills."
For the full-length, exclusive interview with Freddie Roach, click on the video link to the right...