Van den Berg leaves Lions

rugby26 April 2023 09:36| © SuperSport
By:Brenden Nel
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Albert van den Berg © Gallo Images

The Emirates Lions have been rocked by forwards coach Albert van den Berg’s decision not to renew his contract.

The Lions made the announcement on Wednesday, shortly after the team went through their post-season post-mortem at Emirates Airline Park on Tuesday after the end of the season.

Van den Berg has been with the Lions for the last two seasons and has been widely credited with the Lions' progress as a formidable unit over the past few years.

The Lions had previously announced that defence coach Jaque Fourie had renewed his contract, but there was no word on the role of head coach Ivan van Rooyen nor attack coach Ricardo Loubscher.

“There are conversions with everyone regarding contracts and all of that,” Van Rooyen said after his side’s win over Zebre on Saturday. “We will probably know in the next two or three weeks. At this stage, it’s just back to work.”

Van den Berg hasn’t been happy for some time, and recent reports in the media underlined the fact that things weren’t always good in the management team, especially after a number of leaks on internal matters.

Lions CEO Rudolf Straeuli thanked Van den Berg for his service.

"On behalf of our Chairman Mr Altmann Allers and the LRC board, we would like to thank Albert for his contribution to the team over the past two seasons. He joined us at a time when the franchise embarked on our debut season and later, the EPCR Challenge Cup," Straeuli said in a statement.

"We wish him and his family all the best as they embark on their next chapter."

Van den Berg has been linked with jobs in Europe and Japan as his next challenge.