• Freddie Roach and Manny Pacquiao have kept in contact amid the pandemic
  • Roach revealed that Pacquiao and his team are looking forward to a fight with Mikey Garcia
  • The renowned boxing trainer is positive Pacquiao will not fight this year

Boxing trainer Freddie Roach has revealed Manny Pacquiao’s possible return date and targeted opponent.

Despite being busy helping his country deal with the coronavirus pandemic, Pacquiao has managed to keep in contact with his longtime trainer after they worked together for the Filipino boxer’s last two fights, Keith Thurman and Adrien Broner.

In a recent interview with, Roach lifted the lid on his pupil’s future plans, revealing that he doesn’t see Pacquiao entering the boxing ring before the end of 2020 regardless of the pandemic situation.

However, Roach is confident that the 41-year-old would still consider one or two more fights before running for president of the Philippines, especially with the array of 147-pound top-tiers hoping to get a crack at the eight-division titleholder.

“He [Pacquiao} won’t fight this year,” Roach said. “But if this [pandemic] ever goes away – and I’m not sure it will because it’s getting worse and worse, not better and better – but I think Manny will fight once or twice more before he becomes the president of his country. And then he will retire.”

While Roach has not mentioned a specific timeframe for Pacquiao’s highly-anticipated ring return, the 60-year-old revealed that from what he has been told, Pacquiao is looking forward to facing Mikey Garcia, with the possibility of the fight taking place in the U.S. or Saudi Arabia.

“He will fight again, I feel, and from when I’ve talked to him, he wants to fight once or twice more,” Roach said. “But the thing is, it could be anywhere from the U.S. to Saudi Arabia, anywhere. They were talking about Mikey Garcia and I said, ‘Yeah, that’s the perfect fight for Manny.’ But I don’t think we’ll really know until this [pandemic] is over.”

But while Roach has expressed approval for the Pacquiao vs. Garcia fight, top welterweights such as Shawn Porter and current WBO welterweight champion Terence “Bud” Crawford also present a strong case to be Pacquiao’s next opponent.

The idea of Pacquiao vs. McGregor has also been generating buzz in recent weeks. But according to the Filipino legend’s strength and conditioning coach Justin Fortune, fighting McGregor would do nothing for Pacquiao’s legacy.

Manny Pacquiao Freddie Roach
Manny Pacquiao and Freddie Roach have been together for 12 years. Reuters