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Page last updated at 16:39 GMT, Tuesday, 29 December 2009

Preston sack boss Alan Irvine after run of poor results

Alan Irvine
Irvine took charge of Preston in November 2007

Preston manager Alan Irvine has been relieved of his duties after just over two years in charge at Deepdale.

Chairman Derek Shaw made the move after Monday's 1-0 loss to Sheffield United.

North End were one place above the Championship relegation zone when the former Everton coach took over in November 2007, replacing Paul Simpson.

The 51-year-old took Preston to last season's Championship play-offs but a run of one win in 10 games has seen them slip from the top six to 16th.

They currently lie eight points away from both the Championship's play-off and relegation zones ahead of Saturday's FA Cup third round home date against Colchester. Irvine's assistant Rob Kelly has been put in temporary charge for Saturday's game.

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Kelly was also placed in caretaker charge for a week prior to Irvine's appointment at Deepdale two years ago.

"The decision was not taken lightly", Shaw told the club website.

"Alan did an extremely good job keeping us in the Championship and took us to the play-offs last season.

"However after a good start to the 2009-10 campaign, we have only picked up seven points out of a possible 30 since our last away win at Sheffield Wednesday on 20 October.

"In that period we have only scored six goals and that sort of record is not something we could allow to continue without addressing it."



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