David Haye has spoken of his desire to fight Anthony Joshua and thinks the 27-year-old has the advantage over Wladimir Klitschko ahead of their bout on 29 April. Haye, who is also preparing for a heavyweight blockbuster against Tony Bellew on 4 March, is eager to step into the ring with Joshua and warned the IBF heavyweight champion that he is a "different animal" to Klitschko.

Haye will be taking a keen interest in Joshua's fight with the Ukrainian, who will be aged 41 when he goes toe-to-toe with the 2012 Olympic gold medalist at the 02 arena. While "The Hayemaker", 36, believes his compatriot has the edge over the man who defeated him in a heavyweight unification bout in 2011, he does not think Joshua will be itching to fight him.

Speaking exclusively to IBTimes UK, Haye said: "I'll be watching the Klitschko vs Joshua fight carefully. I'll make sure I'm there ringside for that one. That'll be fun. I would love a fight (with Joshua), whether he'd love it is a different story. Klitschko is a very different animal to me, he doesn't let his hands go anymore. He hasn't fought for a year and a half, his last fight was horrendous; he didn't throw any punches.

"The pendulum's definitely in Joshua's favour, the advantage is all in his side. He knows I'm not like that: I let my hands go, I've fought regularly, I'm having a fight in March a month before him. Whether he'll be as confident fighting me as he is Klitschko is a different story. Fingers crossed he gets through this fight and then we can talk about a big clash between me and him."

Anthony Joshua and Wladimir Klitschko
Joshua and Klitschko will touch gloves at the 02 Arena on 29 April Getty Images

If Haye and Joshua are to lock horns, it will have to be sooner rather than later. Haye is planning to retire at the end of 2018 in order to focus fully on Hayemaker Ringstar, a promotional company headed by him and former CEO of Golden Boy Promotions, Richard Schaefer.

The Bermondsey boxer was keen to stress that he could "fight another 15 fights", but thinks four or five is "enough to do what I need to do".

"I've got four of five fights before I achieve what I believe I am able to achieve," Haye observed. "I think four or five fights is enough to do what I need to do. I could fight another 15 fights if I wanted to but I don't want to. I want to achieve what I want to achieve in as few fights as possible. I don't take unnecessary punishment."