Tyson Fury has said Francis Ngannou should be grateful for the opportunity in which he finds himself ahead of Friday’s fight with Anthony Joshua in Saudi Arabia.

MMA fighters and boxers, as a rule, do not historically cross over into one another’s realms with great success.

Ngannou broke that generalization with a valiant and impressive performance against Fury in October, dropping the WBC heavyweight champion with a knockdown that shocked both sporting fraternities.

Fury eventually clawed himself back into the fight and squeaked past Ngannou with a narrow split decision.

Initial plans for Friday were for former unified heavyweight champion Joshua to take on longtime rival Deontay Wilder. Such plans were scuttled by Joseph Parker, who bullied, outfought and outboxed Wilder on Dec. 23. Wilder and Parker shared the billing with Joshua, who forced Otto Wallin to be withdrawn by his corner after five rounds.

Fury, speaking to “The Stomping Ground,” said Ngannou should be grateful to him for improving his finances and finding himself in a position to generate more money against Joshua.

“I think it’s a great fight,” Fury said. “When I was fighting Ngannou, it was a ‘mismatch,’ but it is what it is.

“Ngannou was ‘useless,’ but he proved everyone wrong, so fantastic for him. I put him on the map, made him a multi-millionaire, and now I’m making him even more money.

“So he needs to thank me. He needs to get on his knees and kiss my feet for what I’ve done for him.”