Johan Ackermann has previously said that leaving the Lions would be difficult, emotional decision to make. Photo: Luigi Bennett/BackpagePix
JOHANNESBURG - Lions head coach Johan Ackermann is expected to confirm his move to Gloucester in England on Saturday, or at the latest by Monday.

The Lions confirmed on Thursday that an announcement on Ackermann’s future was imminent, while Gloucester director of rugby David Humphreys said on Wednesday: “We said all along our deadline is the end of this month, so this weekend we’ll be in a better position to know the outcome of the process we’ve gone through.”

Humphreys further told GloucestershireLive: “We’re very confident that we’ll end up with a very good head coach. It’s been an interesting process but we’ll be pleased with the appointment.”

The Lions have a bye after Saturday's round six match against the Sharks, freeing Ackermann up to finalise the details of his anticipated appointment. Former Brumbies coach and the man Ackermann is in line to replace at Gloucester, Laurie Fisher, this week endorsed the former Bok for the job at the Premiership team.

“I just know that he has done a wonderful job with the Lions and all you can be judged on is what you’re currently doing,” said Fisher.

“They were Super Rugby finalists last year and they’re flying high again this year.”

Were Ackermann to leave the Joburg-based team - at the end of the current Super Rugby season - it is anticipated that his assistant coach Swys de Bruin would take over the head coach position.

The Star