The return of Ricky Hatton has caused shockwaves around boxing as fans speculate as to whether the popular Mancunian can once again challenge for world titles.

The date of November 24 has already been set and it now seems as though an opponent will soon be named. The Daily Mirror believes that Hatton will return to the ring against rugged Australian fighter Michael Katsidis.

Ricky Hatton
Can Hatton relive the glory days and once again challenge for a world title? [Reuters]

The 32-year-old may have lost four out of his last five bouts, but he still represents a genuine threat to a fighter who has not been in action for more than three years.

Katsidis is no stranger to these shores, having previously upset Kevin Mitchell inside just three rounds and handing the Londoner his first ever professional loss.

Three years before Katsidis had dashed the hopes of Graham Earl when once again winning inside the distance to become the interim WBO lightweight champion.

In the last two years he has fought some of the very best lightweights on the planet by stepping in the ring with Juan Manuel Marquez, Robert Guerrero and Ricky Burns. All three fights have ended with a loss, but there is no shame in losing to these fighters.

Earlier this year the Australian decided to step up to light-welterweight in order to challenge Albert Mensah for the IBF title. He lost a close majority decision and will now be looking to prove that his career is far from over.

An aggressive and powerful puncher, Katsidis has always provided a good acid test for fighters hoping to mix it at world level. Perhaps this is the reason Hatton is considering facing the man nicknamed 'The Great'.

Hatton may also want to recreate one of the proudest moments of his career, when he beat an Australian warrior in Kostya Tsyzu to claim the IFB light welterweight title.

There are similarities. Tszyu was still a massive name despite being somewhat of a faded force. The fight was at the MEN Arena, the same venue named for Hatton's comeback, and it saw 'The Hitman' confirm his credentials as an elite, world level fighter.

Katsidis would be forced to come up to an unnatural weight, while Hatton has always been comfortable making the 140lb limit.

Hatton has spoken of his desire to win world titles and avenge the losses to Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather, but first he must beat an opponent which would give him credentials in the division.

Katsidis is well respected in the fight game and is perhaps the perfect choice. I'm sure we won't have to wait long to discover if the Aussie is indeed lined up for Hatton's return.