RICKY BURNS could be set to finally realise his dream of fighting a true legend of the noble art.
The WBO lightweight champion is set to meet the winner of the bout between his long-term English nemesis Kevin Mitchell and former three-weight Mexican world champion Marco Antonio Barrera.
The duo, who have yet to be confirmed, will meet at West Ham's Upton Park on the under-card of the David Haye versus Dereck Chisora heavyweight tear-up on July 14, with Burns set to face the winner, possibly on the opening night of the new Commonwealth velodrome, in September.
Despite the fact that Barrera is now 38 and has fought only twice since losing on cuts to Amir Khan in March 2009, Burns' manager Alex Morrison believes the 'baby-faced assassin' will have too much class for Mitchell and that Barrera will prevail to set up one of the biggest fights seen in a Scottish ring.
Morrison said: "Ricky has always wanted to fight a true ring legend and Marco Antonio Barrera falls into that bracket.
"You only have to look at his trilogy of fights with Erik Morales and Manny Pacquiao to see just what a great he is.
"He may not have been too active of late since he lost to Amir Khan on cuts, but he has won both of his fights since then and has always been a clean-living fighter.
"Barrera is an intelligent man who trained to be a lawyer and he would not be taking on Mitchell if he did not fancy him.
"I think if Barrera is in half the shape he was in his prime then he will give Mitchell a boxing lesson and that would set Ricky up for a meeting with a real ring great.
"I would hope we would be able to make that happen at the Commonwealth Velodrome.
"For me that would be as big, if not bigger, than any fight that has ever been staged in Scotland."
The yet-to-be-finished £117million development would provide the ideal setting for Burns against either Barrera or Mitchell.
And Morrison has questioned the Cockney's ability to prove he is truly world-class against a great champion who has been a cute operator at the highest level.
He said: "Two years ago Mitchell stepped up to genuine world-class level and was stopped in three rounds by Michael Katsidis and we all saw how Ricky gave Katsidis a boxing lesson over 12 rounds when they met last November.
"So, for me, this all depends on how much Barrera has left in the tank. He has got to have been looking at Morales winning and defending a world title at 35 and said 'I can do that'."
Meanwhile, tickets for Scott Harrison's June 29 comeback at the Kelvin Hall against French Algerian Brahim Bariz are now available.