Sunderland midfielder Liam Bridcutt will have to wait until Steve Evans' future at Leeds United is sorted before negotiating a permanent move to the West Yorkshire club.
Bridcutt has impressed while on loan at the Championship club, and has been told that he has no future on Wearside. The Scottish international has 12 months left to run on his contract at Sunderland, and has played an integral part in Leeds' charge to safety.
The 26-year-old will return to Sunderland at the end of the season, and is believed to be open to a move back to Elland Road in the summer.
Evans' future in doubt
Leeds manager Steve Evans has yet to receive any assurance of his future from owner Massimo Cellinno, who is believed to be considering replacing the former Rotherham boss.
Despite guiding Leeds away from the relegation zone, Evans' departure would come as no surprise to the Leeds faithful, who have seen various managers come and go under the ownership of the Italian Cellino.
The Scottish manager is keen on signing Bridcutt permanently, but will be unable to until he is given the green light to continue his job on the touchline.
Evans believed that the midfielder "made a big difference" to his Leeds side, but is yet to discuss the possibility of retaining the Sunderland loan man with his employer Cellino.
The charismatic gaffer held talks with Cellino about his playing staff, but only discussed "contracted and out-of-contract players".
Bridcutt keen to return
There is no place in Sam Allardyce's squad for Bridcutt, who will have been pushed even further down the pecking order at the Stadium of Light following the arrival of Jan Kirchhoff, who has excelled in the defensive midfield role that Briductt would like to play.
Speaking in February, Bridcutt talked about his future and admitted that he would be interested in remaining at the Championship club, providing the "circumstances are right".
"Every club I'm at, I want to be aiming high and I want the club to aim high. If Leeds are willing to do that in the summer then I'd be happy to stay," said Bridcutt.
One stumbling block could be Bridcutt's wages, who is currently earning more than £25,000 and would likely have to take a pay-cut to remain in Yorkshire.