Leeds have made a statement of their Premier League ambitions with the signing of Jean-Kevin Augustin from Bundesliga leaders RB Leipzig.
Augustin, formerly of Paris Saint-Germain and Monaco, has joined on an initial loan deal with Leeds having the option to purchase at the end of the season.
The 22-year-old former France youth international will provide competition in attack for Patrick Bamford, with Eddie Nketiah’s loan deal cut short by Arsenal earlier this month.
Bamford has 10 goals in the Championship this season, some way short of Aleksandar Mitrovic and Ollie Watkins at the top of the scoring charts with 18.
Leeds are second behind West Brom with 28 games played, but their form has stuttered in 2020.
Fans are wary of another potential collapse under Marcelo Bielsa following their implosion at the end of last season.
They have played four and lost three in 2020, going out of the FA Cup to Arsenal and taking just a single point in the league, against West Brom on New Year’s Day.
The chasing pack have cut the deficit to three points, though Leeds do still have a game in hand over third-placed Fulham.
The arrival of Augustin, then, is hoped to provide some fresh impetus and breathe new life into Leeds’ season.
He failed to score in 10 Ligue 1 appearances for Monaco in the first half of the campaign, and returned to parent club Leipzig as a result.
However, 20 goals in all competitions across two seasons at Leipzig will have fans hopeful he can make a big impact in the second tier.
Augustin arrives as Leeds’ third signing of the January transfer window so far.
Teenage goalkeeper Elia Caprile has been added on a three-year deal from Chievo, with attacking midfielder Ian Poveda joining on a four-and-a-half-year contract from Manchester City.
Augustin joined PSG as a youngster in 2009, and made his first-team debut five years later after working his way through the club’s youth system.
He played 31 times for PSG, winning the Ligue 1 title in 2015-16 among a clutch of domestic honours before moving to Leipzig in 2017.
He featured in the Champions League and Europa League at the German side, and was a member of France’s victorious European Under-19 Championship side in 2016.