In Brief

Today’s back pages: London’s calling for Anthony Joshua and Leicester are in the hunt for the Premier League title

A round up of the sport headlines from UK newspapers on 9 December

AJ set for homecoming 

Metro and The Guardian report that “London’s calling” for Anthony Joshua after he reclaimed the heavyweight belts on Saturday night. 

The British boxer, 30, beat Andy Ruiz Jr by unanimous decision in the rematch in Saudi Arabia to win back the IBF, WBA and WBO titles. 

Joshua’s next fight could be against Kubrat Pulev or Olesksandr Usyk and the Guardian and The Daily Telegraph say that the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium could be the host venue.

“London’s calling, I think,” said Joshua. “British supporters do play a big part in my career. Any time I’m on home soil, I can’t lose.”

Promoter Eddie Hearn added: “The phone has gone crazy. It’s like, ‘bring him here, bring him here’. They’ve seen what we’ve done here and there’s a lot of options internationally, but he does want to box back in the UK. 

“We spoke to Spurs about hosting this fight [the rematch against Ruiz], which they were keen to do, but unfortunately the dates didn’t work out. They would be keen to do it and it would be a nice stadium to do it in London.”

Meanwhile, Joshua has revealed that he had a “health issue” in the build-up to his shock loss against Ruiz in June.

He told the BBC: “I didn’t know what was wrong with me. I felt so tired and drained and thought it must be down to training.”

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Foxes are flying 

Leicester City are “in the hunt” for the Premier League title, says the Daily Express, after their 4-1 victory at Aston Villa yesterday. 

Brendan Rodgers’s side have now won a club-record eight league games in a row. They are eight points behind leaders Liverpool and six ahead of third-placed Manchester City

BBC Sport reports that Rodgers is happy for his side to be left out of the EPL title conversation but defender Jonny Evans says it’s good to be talked about as contenders.

“People want recognition for how they’re playing, everyone likes to be talked up a bit,” said Evans. “It’s nice that people are talking about us. 

“We’re up there, we’re challenging and playing well. Probably now people will start talking more about that. There’s a long way to go but we’re all enjoying it which is a big factor. There’s a great spirit about the club.”

Striker Jamie Vardy was Leicester’s “Fantastic Mr Fox”, says i Sport, after scoring two goals at Villa Park. Kelechi Iheanacho and Evans were also on target in the victory. 

Today’s newspaper back pages

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