Preston have announced that manager Phil Brown has left the club with immediate effect.
Brown joined North End in January 2011 and failed to keep them in the npower Championship.
The club hoped they would be returning at the first possible attempt but are currently languishing in 10th, five points from the play-offs, having only won one of their previous 11 outings.
Brown's assistant Brian Horton has also left the club with Graham Alexander and David Unsworth being put in temporary charge.
He becomes the 11th Football League manager to lose his job this season.
In a statement released by the League Managers Association, Brown said he was disappointed not to be given more time at Preston.
"I am very disappointed to have received the news today regarding my employment and that I will not be allowed the opportunity to achieve the ambition of promotion back to the Championship with Preston North End Football Club," Brown said.
"Whilst I acknowledge that recent results have been disappointing, I was particularly pleased with how we started this season when we were second in the league after a run of seven consecutive league wins, especially following a number of key departures from the playing staff over the summer and a large number of injuries to significant players in the limited squad.
"We are just five points off the play-offs and firmly believed that the club would be in contention for promotion come the end of the season. In order to be successful, more time was needed to achieve our objectives and it is with regret I have been given less than one year in charge of Preston North End.
"I appear to have been dismissed on the basis of the last 10 matches rather than the overall picture. Nevertheless, I enjoyed my time at Preston and I will always be extremely grateful for the opportunity given to me. I would like to wish the club, the board, the players and the supporters all the very best for the future."
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