Boxing fans have long wished for a bout between the two British heavyweights but the Gypsy King has conceded that the bout is unlikely to happen after negotiations failed multiple times.
Fury told Sky Sports: "I thought for years and years and years me and Joshua would have fought each other and he’s not been wanting to do that challenge for years.
"You can’t force somebody into doing something no matter how much money there is or … whatever there is on the line. You can’t force somebody to do something that they don’t want to do. Unless both parties are willing, then these fights don’t get made as we’ve seen over the years.
"In this last year, I’ve tried two or three times. It’s always not happened for whatever reason. I’m not optimistic."
The WBC world champion did suggest that the pair's shared nationality could have contributed to Joshua's reluctance to fight.
Fury said: "I just think he’s happy losing to people not from this country. I don’t think he wants to lose to someone from this country, no matter what money is on the line. Maybe he does, but not right now, maybe in the future. We’ll see. I can’t look around the corner. We’ll see what the future holds."
Fury's bid for a heavyweight unification fight against Oleksandr Usyk also fell through earlier this year but he is still hopeful of taking on the Ukrainian at some point.
He said: "I do believe that you can only do what you can do in this sport—if the fight’s available at the time you take them and if they’re not available then you can’t take them. Will we fight in the future? Hopefully. I like to, I always believed it’s an easy fight."