Jean-Kevin Augustin is expected to be a completely different player when Leeds United resume their Championship promotion campaign, Football Insider understands.
The striker, 22, has made just three substitute appearances and struggled for fitness since his move in January on a loan-to-buy deal from RB Leipzig.
A Leeds source has told Football Insider that Augustin has made big strides in terms of getting into shape during the two-month suspension and the club’s coaches are expecting him to make a big impact when the season resumes.
That is likely to be in the middle of next month although the EFL has yet to decide a definitive date amid ongoing talks.
Augustin was struggling with a hamstring injury and had missed the last three of Leeds’ five consecutive wins before the lockdown in March.
But he is now fully fit and said to be in impressive condition as he gets back up to speed ahead of the restart.
United’s fit players have mostly been training individually at home during the lockdown but Augustin has spent plenty of time at Thorp Arch rehabilitating and building up his fitness levels to the level Marcelo Bielsa expects of all his senior men.
The Leeds medical staff have been working at the training ground only with the injured players and Augustin, along with long-term absentee Adam Forshaw, initially fell into this category.
The subsequent focus has been on improving the forward’s speed, particularly through the sprinting drills that can gain him the crucial edge over defenders in match situations.
There is a growing belief the French striker can now make a big impact for the promotion favourites for the final nine matches of the league campaign.
Augustin has yet to open his Leeds goal account but has an impressive record at Leipzig, where his 67 matches have yielded 20 goals and eight assists.
In other Leeds United news, a huge Marcelo Bielsa contract update can be REVEALED.