LONDON (19 Nov) – Four-weight world champion Miguel Cotto has praised his legendary trainer Freddie Roach as the man to mastermind his victory over Mexican rival Canelo Alvarez.

The Puerto Rican icon’s fight week preparations have been marred in controversy after he was stripped of his WBC middleweight belt for failing to pay the governing bodies sanctioning fees.

As a result, Cotto will no longer be able to defend his world title for Saturday night’s megafight, exclusively live on BoxNation, but is certain he will emerge the victor after joining forces with the esteemed Roach, who has turned his career around with three wins in a row.

“Everything happens when it is the time to happen. I arrived three years ago, and my career had a different way to go right now because of Freddie, because of what Freddie did to myself,” said Cotto.

“I don’t know what would happen in my career if Freddie was with me before. Nobody can know that.

“We have developed a good chemistry between us. We can talk about our plans, what is going to be best for us during the fight. Our chemistry is the best thing we have with each other. Freddie has done such a great job and we are very prepared for this fight,” he said.

Hall of Fame trainer Roach is also upbeat, backing his man to take care of business in sensational style this weekend when he steps in against the formidable Canelo, who has 45 wins with just one loss – that coming against pound-for-pound king Floyd Mayweather.

“We’ve had three great fights so far, and I expect the best one to be coming up soon,” said Roach.

“I think Miguel is the best fighter he’s ever fought, and I think he’s handpicked opponents. Mayweather was a tough fighter but not a big puncher, and this is the first heavy puncher he’s going against.

“Miguel has looked great in his last three fights, and his punching power is improving, and he’s using every bit of his body weight to do that, and it’s something we have been working on, and he’s punching very well.

“I feel that this guy gets hit too much, and I think Miguel will knock him out somewhere along the way. It’s going to be a great fight, and we are looking for a knock out in this fight, and we will be the first person to knock out Alvarez,” said a confident Roach.

35-year-old Cotto will enter the ring as the more experienced man having turned professional nearly 15 years ago when he made his debut in February 2001 with a first round stoppage over Jason Doucet.

Cotto claims a win over Canelo will be his biggest victory and has revealed that the time is near at hand for him to hang up his gloves.

“Boxing is the only thing I know to do in life. I’ve been working for the benefit of my family. I said before that I’m going to retire myself. I am 35 years old. I plan to be in boxing no longer than a year from now,” said Cotto.

“I don’t want to be in the sport for that much longer. I see two or three more fights and that will be all.

“This win will probably be the biggest victory of my career, but at the end of the road it’s just going to be victory No. 41 for me,” he said.

Cotto v Canelo is live on BoxNation (Sky 437/490HD, Virgin 525, TalkTalk 415, online or app) this Saturday night. Visit to subscribe.

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