Leeds United coaches privately fear the club will not see the best of Jean-Kevin Augustin for the rest of the season, Football Insider understands.
The striker, 22, will miss his third consecutive Championship match tomorrow with a hamstring injury after Marcelo Bielsa ruled him out at his media conference on Thursday.
A Leeds source has told Football Insider that hopes of Augustin spearheading a late automatic promotion assault are diminishing amid the latest setback.
The January signing also faces a battle to be fit for the Championship clashes against Cardiff City on Sunday week and then Fulham the following Wednesday.
By that point, there will be just seven league matches of the campaign remaining and Augustin is likely to face a major battle to secure game time, never mind supplant Patrick Bamford and Tyler Roberts from the starting XI.
Augustin had arrived at Leeds late in January from RB Leipzig, via Monaco, some way short of the elite level of fitness Bielsa demands of all first team starters.
But, as revealed by Football Insider, the Frenchman had done extensive training with United’s conditioning staff away from the main squad.
Augustin made only three substitute appearances before the effects of the intensive training manifested in the muscle injury, not uncommon for professionals experiencing a new level of training.
Augustin joined Leeds in the final week of the January window on an initial loan after his season-long loan to Monaco was cancelled at the halfway point.
The agreement United have with Leipzig is an obligation to pay a further £18m on top of the £2m loan fee if they go up to the Premier League.
In other Leeds United news, it can be REVEALED that the club are closing in on £5million signing amid major behind-the-scenes development.