Struggling managers Darren Ferguson and Brian Laws pay the price

Preston have terminated the contract of manager Darren Ferguson in a bid to retain their Championship status.

The 38-year-old son of Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson arrived at Deepdale in January this year having impressed at Peterborough. He has been unable to turn North End into promotion challengers, though, and leaves them rooted to the bottom of the table, five points adrift of safety. Preston confirmed Ferguson's sacking in a statement that read: "At a board meeting held today the directors of Preston North End decided to terminate the position of Darren Ferguson as manager. The club expressed their appreciation of the efforts made by Darren but felt that the league position represented a significant threat to the club and it was felt that a change of manager might bring better fortune."

The Whites have picked up just five wins out of 22 outings so far this campaign and ended the year with a home defeat at the hands of Middlesbrough on Tuesday. The announcement means Ferguson has been sacked twice in his short managerial career so far, having surprisingly lost his job at Peterborough in November 2009.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Meanwhile, Brian Laws stepped down as the manager of Burnley yesterday at the request of chairman Barry Kilby.

Law's future was plunged into doubt following Tuesday's home defeat at the hands of former club Scunthorpe, with operational director Brendan Flood confirming talks would be held over the 49-year-old's future. The club decided to part company with Laws sooner, though, confirming yesterday afternoon he had been asked to step aside from his post.

Laws later released a statement through the League Managers Association (LMA) which read: "Naturally I am very saddened to receive the news and disappointed that I will no longer have the opportunity to achieve my ambition of reaching the Championship play-offs this season and, ultimately, promotion back to the Barclays Premier League.

"I am taking advice from the LMA who will be working to reach an amicable agreement with the football club on my behalf. Accordingly, I will not make any further comment at this stage."