Ferguson in the Preston frame

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Preston chairman Derek Shaw insisted he would be "foolish" not to consider former Peterborough boss Darren Ferguson as a potential successor to sacked boss Alan Irvine.

Irvine, 51, was surprisingly shown the door on Tuesday despite saving the Lancashire outfit from relegation in 2007/08 and guiding them into the play-offs last season.

Shaw told Press Association Sport: "Yes, of course. Darren Ferguson did a fantastic job at Peterborough so he's obviously in the frame. We would be foolish not to consider him but there are several quality candidates out there and we've not spoken to anybody just yet."

He added: "I have received literally dozens and dozens of phone calls from people in and outside of the game expressing an interest in the job.

"We will look at all our options very carefully and then go through the formal application and interview process.

"There's a few experienced managers out of work at the moment and there's one or two up and coming managers that we know about as well."

Ferguson is likely to favour the vacant managerial position at Bolton after Gary Megson was unseated on Wednesday.

Paul Jewell, Steve Cotterill and Jim Gannon would then lead the race to succeed Irvine at Deepdale.

Shaw added: "We'll go about our business quietly and efficiently because all the publicity surrounding Darren Ferguson when he left Peterborough was like an episode of the Muppet Show."

Shaw, whose decision to axe Irvine has attracted criticism from Preston fans, has placed Rob Kelly in caretaker charge ahead of this weekend's FA Cup tie at home to Colchester.

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

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Preston North End

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