WRU confirm talks over Gatland taking Lions job

Warren Gatland
Warren Gatland took over in 2007 Photo: ITV News Wales

The Welsh Rugby Union say that talks have been held between Wales Coach, Warren Gatland and the British and Irish Lions. The WRU's chief executive Roger Lewis has told the Guardian that they held informal negotiations with Lion's board over the last few months. He told the paper that if Gatland takes over the role it must not mean he abandons his Wales duties.

It's understood that Warren Gatland was offered the job of coaching the British and Irish Lions during talks held in London last week. Gatland is not expected to be formally announced as Head Coach until next month. The Wales Rugby Union have already given permission for the Lion's Board to speak to their man about leading the team in Australia next Summer but don't want him to take over until after this year's Autumn Internationals. According to the paper though, it's believed the Lions board will insist that he is not involved in next year’s Six Nation's championship to avoid any potential conflicts of interest.

Wales winning Six Nation's Grand Slam
Wales won their sixth grand slam in eight seasons this year Credit: David Jones/PA Wire

Warren Gatland led Wales to their third Grand Slam since 2005 and his second since taking over in this year's championship. The 48 year old from New Zealand took over from Gareth Jenkins in 2007 after Wales were knocked out of the World Cup in France by Fiji. He immediately made his mark on the national side with Wales winning the Grand Slam just a year later.