Leinster senior coach Stuart Lancaster says Warren Gatland has not offered him a role on his backroom team for the next British and Irish Lions tour in South Africa.

But the former England head coach added that any coach would relish the opportunity to take on the current world champions on such a stage.

Gatland, who will be in charge of the Lions for the third time in the summer of 2021, recently said that he had spoken to Lancaster as he weighs up his options ahead of the tour.

Subsequently, Leinster head coach Leo Cullen told RTÉ Sport last week that there were "lots of miles to go in that saga" before Gatland makes a decision.

But speaking at a press conference as Leinster's return to Guinness Pro14 and Heineken Champions Cup action approaches, Lancaster stated that a Lions offer had not been made as of yet.

"Just to clarify, I don't think [Gatland] mentioned me as a potential Lions coach. I think he mentioned that we had a conversation which we did," he said.

"I can end speculation. He didn't offer me a coaching role with the Lions, so put that one to bed.

"But we did catch up. Obviously, I know him well, coached England against Wales since 2012. So we did have a catch-up, but there is a long way to go on that."

Dan Leavy and Stuart Lancaster

When asked by RTÉ Sport if he would be open to a role if one is offered, he added: "I think if you ask any coach in the northern hemisphere, 'would you like to be involved?', of course you'd like to be involved because it's coaching at the highest level against teams that are the current world champions." 

On the injury front, Lancaster confirmed that flanker Dan Leavy, who has been absent with a long-term knee injury sustained in March 2019, will not be available for the first game back against Munster on 22 August.

Fellow international second row James Ryan's shoulder injury will keep him out for potentially another three or four weeks. 

"Dan's made amazing progress but they are not involved in team sessions at the moment," said Lancaster.

"It would be a stretch to say the least for Dan to be involved in the Munster game because the injury, as severe as it was and the length of time out, we needed to make sure that we managed him back appropriately.

"But he's been doing unit stuff and bits and pieces but he's still got to do full training for a full week and we're nearly a week away from playing Munster now.

"And James has made great progress really. I think Leo said that last week. Again, he wouldn't be training with us at the moment but we're optimistic if things go well that he can get towards the semi-finals and finals stages which is three or four weeks from now."