David Haye believes a potential match-up between him and Anthony Joshua would be like Muhammad Ali fighting George Foreman, however, he would need a destructive win over Tony Bellew first.

Battling through an Achilles injury, Haye suffered the third loss of his career via an 11th-round TKO to Bellew back in March of last year in what was a major boxing upset.

The rematch was eventually pinned for 17 December later that year, but with the "Hayemaker" suffering a bicep injury, it was pegged back to 5 May of this year.

However, WBA, IBF and IBO heavyweight champion Joshua is still on Haye's radar as he wants to fight the very best. While he admits he is the underdog, he feels he could emulate Ali and cause an upset if the two Britons were to meet.

"Anthony Joshua is the biggest name and if I want to be the best then I have to fight the guy with the highest profile, the biggest name and the most belts," Haye was quoted as saying by the Mirror.

"I'd be the huge, huge underdog going into that fight, I'm aware of that. He is 10 years younger, three inches taller and three stone heavier.

"It's like Muhammad Ali fighting George Foreman — Ali had lost to Ken Norton and Joe Frazier and Foreman had knocked them both out. Ali was old, he was finished and allegedly past his prime, but somehow he turned the tables. He beat the monster that was George Foreman when he was past his prime and that solidified his legacy."

The 37-year-old, though, feels he would need to take out heated rival Bellew in a "destructive way" to convince himself that he can take on the likes of Joshua and fellow heavyweight champions in Deontay Wilder and Joseph Parker.

"A medium day is not good enough, it might be good enough to beat Bellew, but beating Joshua, Deontay Wilder, Joseph Parker or anyone else who holds a title, would be so far out of my reach, what's the point?" Haye added.

"Bellew offers a barometer, but it is not just the win. If I knock him out in three rounds, but suffer a cut or knockdown and it is a real battle, I will know.

"How would Joshua, Parker or Wilder handle Bellew? Does he even get past two rounds with those guys? If I do take him out in a destructive way and make it look like a complete mismatch then I see that I can start looking at titles."