Warren Gatland has received an endorsement from the Welsh Rugby Union for the Lions coaching job but they want his work with them to be his top priority.
After guiding Wales to Grand Slam success earlier this month, Gatland is the overwhelming favourite to coach the Lions on their tour to Australia next year.
WRU chief executive Roger Lewis have revealed that informal talks have been held, but highlighted the fact that Wales have end-of-the year Tests coming up which they want Gatland to be involved in.
"We have had informal discussions with the British and Irish Lions over the last few months and we have talked to Warren about this for the best part of a year," Lewis told the Guardian.
"Warren does not have a clause in his contract which contains provision for him to coach the Lions, but we are hugely supportive of him and them.
"What I will say is that there is no question that Warren will not be leading Wales on our very important tour to Australia and I, personally, would like him to be involved in our autumn Tests against New Zealand and Australia in Cardiff."