The Lions have moved swiftly to secure Gatland for a record third successive term, in the process ending the prospect of the Kiwi replacing Eddie Jones as England boss after the World Cup.
Although the contract has yet to be signed as Gatland is currently in New Zealand, a verbal agreement has been reached.
A start date has yet to be finalised, but it is likely that the most successful coach in Six Nations history will take up the role a year out from the tour.
A spokesman for the Lions declined to comment on the news.
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