The 25-year-old had been anointed as the chosen striker for his national side at the start of the campaign but has failed to score, while collecting two yellow cards, a sending-off and a few injuries.
His red card in the defeat by Portugal last Friday night has caused him to miss tonight's match with Luxembourg, with his ban expected to rule Lafferty out of the remaining qualifiers. The forward will find little sympathy from his manager, either.
"I had a good conversation with Kyle," said O'Neill, who has Aberdeen's Niall McGinn available tonight. "I would never say I would wash my hands of him or anything like that because he is still a player who can potentially be a big asset to the squad. But, at this minute in time, he is not giving us very much and he knows that. He knows he needs to address that."