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Page last updated at 19:24 GMT, Wednesday, 6 January 2010

Darren Ferguson named as Preston North End manager


Ferguson sets sights on promotion

Preston have announced the appointment of Darren Ferguson as their new manager on a three-year contract.

Ferguson, 37, left Peterborough by mutual consent in November, with the club bottom of the Championship.

The Scot, son of Manchester United boss Sir Alex, replaces Alan Irvine, who was sacked by the club last week.

"I hope the fans get behind us and buy into what we are trying to do here at the football club," Ferguson told BBC Radio Lancashire.

"They've got to be proud of supporting Preston. I don't want to see people walking round Preston with Manchester United shirts on. I want to see them walking round with Preston shirts on.

"We hope to get to the promised land - that's got to be the ambition for this club."

"You only have to look at the club's structure to get excited. After 10 years in the Championship, reaching the Premier League is the challenge."

Ferguson, who is joined at Deepdale by Kevin Russell and Scott Taylor who were part of his backroom staff during his time at London Road, admitted to consulting his father before accepting the job.

"It would have been wrong not to ask his advice when there are different options out there," he added.

"We were 100% in agreement that this was the right job for me.

"Preston reached the play-offs last season, but this season hasn't materialised as they'd hoped, but the challenge is to get to the Premier League.

Former Peterborough boss Darren Ferguson
Ferguson won 73 of his 145 games in charge at London Road

"I want to entertain the fans. That's my philosophy. I don't want to be bored while watching my side. The fans work hard all week to earn money to come down here to be entertained."

Preston interviewed five potential managers before settling on Ferguson.

Chairman Derek Shaw insisted Ferguson was the outstanding candidate for the job and backed him to succeed at Deepdale.

"Darren immediately came under our radar when we began the search for a new manager and we are delighted to have him in place so quickly," said Shaw.

"Darren is young, British and very ambitious. We are very confident he will prove a success here at Preston North End."

Paul Fletcher

Ferguson joined Peterborough after a playing career that included spells at Manchester United, Wolves, Sparta Rotterdam - on loan - and Wrexham.

He left Wrexham to join Peterborough as a player-coach before taking over as manager and winning 73 of his 145 games in charge and leading them to two successive promotions, taking them from League Two to the Championship.

Reading expressed an interest in the Scot in the summer but he signed a new four-year contract at Peterborough in July after he was refused permission to speak to the Royals.

Since leaving Peterborough, Ferguson has been linked with several managerial posts including the vacancy at Sheffield Wednesday.

He was also thought to be in the frame to replace Owen Coyle at Burnley when the Clarets boss completes his expected move to Bolton.

The man who Ferguson replaces at Deepdale, Irvine, 51, was surprisingly shown the door last week despite saving the Lancashire outfit from relegation in 2007/08 and guiding them into the play-offs last season.

Preston made a steady start to the season under Irvine as they earned 18 points from their opening nine games.

But a run of two wins in their following 14 games resulted in the club dropping to 16th in the Championship and sealed Irvine's fate.

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see also
Ferguson in Preston frame - Shaw
30 Dec 09 |  Preston
Manager Irvine sacked by Preston
30 Dec 09 |  Preston
Posh confirm Ferguson departure
12 Jan 11 |  Peterborough
Posh block Royals' Ferguson talks
02 Jun 09 |  Peterborough

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Mail Online UK Ferguson Jnr: Preston are the right club for me... just ask Sir Alex! - 1 hr ago
News of the World Ferguson confirmed as Preston manager - 13 hrs ago
Daily Express Preston name Darren Ferguson as new manager - 13 hrs ago
Clyde 2 Preston Sign Up Fergie - 20 hrs ago
Portsmouth Today Preston land Ferguson - 20 hrs ago