Leeds United’s hopes of signing Jean-Kevin Augustin have received a significant boost after reports in France claimed the striker had instructed his agent to secure him a transfer to Elland Road.
The Whites are desperate to add a new frontman to their ranks and have seemingly hit a brick wall in their pursuit fro Southampton’s Che Adams, despite offering an impressive £20m package to Saints.
As such, a report on Friday claimed Leeds, while considering their options regarding Adams, had now turned their attention towards Red Bull Leipzig striker Augustin, who is currently on a season-long loan at Monaco.
The initial report, via French paper L’Equipe, claimed Augustin, who has featured just eight times this season for Monaco, scoring once, was opened to the idea of linking up with Marcelo Bielsa’s side.
However, Get French Football, citing L’Equipe, claim Augustin has now decided he wants to make the move to West Yorkshire and has instructed his agent to secure his exit from Monaco. That is despite reports also linking the 22-year-old with moves to Crystal Palace and St Etienne.
Furthermore, the report states that Leeds boss Bielsa had very early on made Augustin one of his priority signings in attack, with the Whites stepping up the hunt once it became apparent Saints were unwilling to budge over Adams.
The Atheltic’s Phil Hay stated that any deal for Augustin would be complicated due to his arrangement with Monaco, but claims in France that the striker wants the move to the Championship promotion hopefuls will at least give the club some hope.
A product of Paris Saint-Germain’s academy, Augustin originally broke through as a teenager in the 2015-16 season, in which Laurent Blanc led them to the Ligue 1 title. He’s also represented France at six different youth levels, from the Under-16s to the Under-21s, but is yet to receive a senior cap.
He has starred for his country’s Under-21s, however, scoring five goals in nine games.
Augustin was sold to RB Leipzig for €13m in the summer of 2017 and scored nine goals in 25 appearances during his debut season in the Bundesliga, but was increasingly pushed to the periphery as Timo Werner became the first-choice option up top.
However, he has been limited to just two starts in Ligue 1 this season thanks to the form of high-profile summer signing Wissam Ben Yedder and Stevan Jovetic, while the club also brought in Islam Slimani on a season’s loan from Leicester at the same time too.
Manchester United have been linked with a move for Slimani and the Ligue 1 side are more enticed by the prospect of letting Augustin leave ahead of Slimani, with the Algerian seen as their back-up to Ben Yedder.
Hopes of a Leeds transfer were given a further lift with the news that Augustin had been left out of Monaco’s squad for their match against Strasbourg on Saturday evening.
— AS Monaco 🇲🇨 (@AS_Monaco) January 25, 2020