The Athletic journalist Phil Hay has said that it will be “impossible” for Leeds United to bring Jean-Kevin Augustin back to the club.
The striker has returned to parent club RB Leipzig after a disastrous loan spell with Leeds.
Leeds are now reportedly looking to get out of the obligation to sign him on a permanent deal, while Leipzig are said to be looking to legal action if the move isn’t completed as agreed. [Kicker]
Hay added that the only saving grace for Augustin is that he’s still under contract with Leipzig and that he wouldn’t lose out financially.
Talking on the latest episode of the Phil Hay Show podcast Hay said, “There is a scenario where Leeds are forced to pay the money for him depending on how watertight the contract is.
“But politically, it makes it difficult/impossible to bring him back to the club given it’s apparent Bielsa doesn’t want him involved. Leipzig are not going to go quietly and forgo the millions of pounds they think they’re owed.
“There is the potential for Leipzig and Leeds to find another way but I can’t imagine any other club would agree a fee that Leeds agreed in January after watching him struggle under Bielsa.
“There probably isn’t going to be a stampede to buy him. I don’t see much alternative but arbitration.
“The only saving grace financially for him is that he’s still under contract at Leipzig and someone will have to pick up his registration. He will be looked after financially but it’s not great for his career.”
It doesn’t look like anyone is going to come out of this debacle on top.
Certainly not Leeds, who have already spent £3.5m on a loan fee for a player who has only played 48 minutes of (poor) football.
Not Augustin, who has struggled at previous clubs and has now failed at a second-tier side in England.
His reputation will have taken a battering and it might not entirely be his fault. Bielsa’s training regime is tough and it seems Augustin’s body just couldn’t hack it.
RB Leipzig agreed a deal and now look like they’re going to have to chase their money through the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
Our hope is that Leeds can find a way out of it and that Augustin finds a new club. Whether Leeds get promoted or not, there’s no way they can afford to drop £18m on a player who is extremely unlikely to ever play for them again.
In other Leeds United news, ‘Will be banned’, ‘Is this legit?’ – Many Leeds fans slam promotion rivals for on-pitch incident