Brown delighted to return to club game at Preston

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The Independent Online

Craig Brown was yesterday confirmed as Preston North End's new manager, and could now approach his old Scotland right-hand man Archie Knox to join him.

The 61-year-old Brown, who has signed a three-year contract, succeeds David Moyes, now manager of Everton, and the caretaker Kelham O'Hanlon, who was a candidate for the full-time job.

O'Hanlon has been offered the assistant manager's position, but, should he decide to leave the club, Brown would turn to Knox, who has been out of work since leaving Everton along with Walter Smith two months ago. He was previously Alex Ferguson's assistant at Manchester United.

Brown, who resigned from the Scotland job in October last year following their failure to qualify for the 2002 World Cup finals, admitted he was relishing his return to club football. He had been working in an advisory role with the Scottish Football Association's youth development programme, but admitted he had missed the day-to-day involvement with players.

"I am very happy to be working with a team again. I was in an important role in Scotland but I didn't have a team so I've been unbeaten for six months! Hopefully that will continue. Every coach wants to work day-to-day. An international job is a privilege but the real nitty-gritty of football is club coaching."

Brown also thanked the SFA for allowing him to leave his role with immediate effect. "I verbally resigned when I spoke to the president and chief executive. They were very good about it," he said.

Brown praised the work done by his predecessor Moyes and O'Hanlon. "I want to acknowledge what David Moyes has done, to me, he is absolutely exceptional. Kelham carried on the excellent work so I've a hard act to follow, but I do appreciate there is potential here for progress, that's why I was happy to come back into club football."

Tony Scholes, the chief executive of Preston North End plc, is confident they have appointed the right man for the job. "Craig's record speaks for itself," Scholes said. "He is a man with great respect in the game, regarded as being one of the finest coaches and tacticians there is in the game."

"The moment we met Craig, we were clear as to who our No 1 choice was. There were a number of high calibre applicants, it's really a measure of how far we have come in the game.

"We listed a number of criteria and Craig scored on every one of those, so ultimately it became a very easy decision for us."

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