Freddie Roach has hit back at suggestions his fighter Manny Pacquiao would enter the ring as the underdog against Vasyl Lomachenko.

Reigning WBO super featherweight champion Lomachenko will step up to fight at lightweight later this year with a mouth-watering showdown with Jorge Linares possibly in the offing in May.

But Pacquaio is an option for later in the year, with the eight-weight world champion confirming earlier this year preliminary talks had been held with Top Rank promoter Bob Arum eager to make that fight happen.

Pacquiao has been competing at welterweight for the last nine years but Arum has suggested the Filipino is read to drop down the weight classes and fight Lomachenko at a catch-weight of 140lbs.

Lomachenko has built a reputation as perhaps the best pound-for-pound fighter currently in boxing, with his destructive stoppage victory over fellow two-time Olympian Guillermo Rigondeaux in December underlining his recent dominance.

The 29-year-old has just one defeat on his record, coming in just his second professional bout to Orlando Salido and Roach, Pacquiao's long-time trainer, insists he would not fear for the Filipino if the fight happens.

Roach told Boxing Scene: "I think it is a fight that the world would be interested in, and if Manny Pacquiao is interested I will get him ready for that.

"In their prime, I think Pacquiao is the better fighter. He had more power, he had more knockouts, he was the better puncher. Lomachenko has good foot work, but he already has one loss on his record. He lost to a guy who didn't care about foot work and just outfought him. He is beatable, he has lost before. He is a very good fighter, but do I fear him? No."

Roach has previously picked holes in Lomachenko's game, accusing the Ukrainian of "playing around" in his comprehensive title defence against Miguel Marriaga in August 2017 and insisting Pacquiao would "walk through" through him if he tried similar tactics.

"If he [Lomachencko] plays around with Manny Pacquiao, Pacquiao will walk through him," Roach said in an interview with Fighthub. "Lomachenko has great footwork, but a tough guy can walk right through him. I think he is beatable. Certain guys gave good styles to beat him. That is why I won't call him the best number one pound-for-pound fighter in the world, because I think [Terence] Crawford is a much more complete fighter."