Former Leeds United striker Jean-Kévin Augustin signs for new club as Whites await verdict on RB Leipzig dispute

Former Leeds United striker Jean-Kévin Augustin has joined top-flight Swiss side FC Basel on a free transfer from FC Nantes.

By Flora Snelson
Tuesday, 21st June 2022, 10:53 am

On Saturday, the Swiss Super League club announced the arrival of the French striker, who only accrued 77 Ligue 1 minutes last season as he fought to get fit while suffering from long COVID.

Meanwhile, a dispute is ongoing between Leeds and RB Leipzig over the ownership of Augustin, who United signed on a loan-to-buy deal in January 2020 but then opted not to purchase.

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Augustin was drafted in at the halfway point of the Whites' 2019/2020 promotion bid after Arsenal's winter recall of striker Eddie Nketiah midway through a season-long loan spell left the Elland Road outfit needing a replacement.

When he arrived, Augustin was not adequately fit the meet the needs of Marcelo Bielsa's team, and only made three brief substitute appearances before a hamstring strain counted him out of contention.

The suspension of football due to coronavirus gave Augustin time to recover from his injury but when play resumed, his fitness proved an issue once again and after securing promotion to the Premier League in the summer, Leeds decided they didn't want to keep him on at Elland Road.

If they achieved top-flight status, the West Yorkshire club were obliged to buy Augustin for a fee of £18m under a legal requirement which expired in June, by which time Leeds ought to have discovered the season's outcome. But the extension of the season due to coronavirus meant that promotion wasn't sealed until July, when the deal had elapsed, leaving the clubs in a dispute over whether or not a purchase was still mandatory.

Jean Kevin Augustin spent last season at Ligue 1 side FC Nantes. Pic: Sebastien Salom-Gomis.

After RB Leipzig filed a complaint, FIFA determined that Leeds ought to pay them the transfer fee, but United decided to appeal the ruling via the Court of Arbitration for Sport, which heard the case in March.

The CAS are yet to deliver their verdict on the dispute.

Former Leeds United striker Jean Kevin Augustin. Pic: Nigel Roddis.