‘Canelo will be truly appreciated when he retires’

Mexican Saul 'Canelo' Alvarez

Mexican Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez , 33, will put his WBA, WBC, WBO and IBF super-middleweight titles on the line against compatriot Jaime Munguia, 27, at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on Saturday.

In her BBC Sport column, boxing analyst Claudia Trejos previews the undisputed title fight and looks at what the future may hold for Canelo at arguably the back end of his career.

Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez may only truly be appreciated when he retires.

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His every move and choice of opponent is often scrutinised. But just look at his resume and who he has beaten.

History will redeem him and it’s sad to think that not everybody recognises his talent, his determination and his achievements today.

Canelo may be a global superstar, but the Mexican fans in particular have always been split in their opinion, and we saw that again at Tuesday’s grand arrivals in Las Vegas.

There was a percentage who were supporting him and then equally those who weren’t. There are plenty of boxing fans who attend his fights just to see if anyone can beat him up.

They feel Canelo isn’t ‘Mexican’ enough – that with his red hair and pale skin he looks more Irish than your typical Mexican and will never compare to Mexican greats such as Julio Cesar Chavez or Salvador Sanchez.

But Canelo is a man of grit, someone who tries to give us entertaining fights. Some fans are now starting to realise that after 19 years as a professional, making his debut as a 14-year-old, he might just have a little something about him.

This is a man who was a father at the age of 16, while juggling his boxing career. He is not a kid who showed up out of the blue and instantly became a star.

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