Whelan Exclusive: What EFL suspension means for Augustin as new transfer details revealed
Noel Whelan claimed it would be a “bonus” for Leeds United if Jean-Kevin Augustin regains fitness whilst the season is paused for coronavirus.
However, the ex-Whites and Coventry striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, does not expect the 22-year-old to return after insisting Marcelo Bielsa has “enough without him”.
The EFL, FA and Premier League announced on Friday that all fixtures were to be suspended until April 3 due to the outbreak of coronavirus.
— EFL (@EFL) March 16, 2020
However, fixtures are expected to be postponed further with COVID-19 more than likely to be an issue for the coming months.
Football Insider revealed earlier on Friday that United do have an obligation to purchase Augustin in the summer if they get promoted, although could still get out of the deal if the player does not want to make his transfer permanent.
When asked whether the break gives Augustin an opportunity to prove his fitness to Marcelo Bielsa, Whelan told Football Insider: “I am not holding my breath on that.
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“Leeds are not sitting top of the league because of Augustin coming in in January. He has done nothing and if he gets fit it is a bonus but if he does not I am not sweating about it. We have got enough without him getting on the pitch again.
“It is important for him to get fit and important for the fans to know a bit more about what he is like – absolutely. But you only get fitter by playing games and we are not playing any!
“Your fitness by running up and down the pitch is different to match sharpness. It will not be there and training ground games are not as quick.”
The former France under-21 international has only made 3 substitute appearances since signing on loan from Red Bull Leipzig in January.
Six wins would guarantee United return to the Premier League for the first time since 2004 but it remains to be seen whether the remaining nine games can be played amid the virus.
In other Leeds United news, it can be REVEALED that club plan to go ahead with signing despite coronavirus uncertainty.