Darren Ferguson: Peterborough United replace sacked Steve Evans with former boss

Darren Ferguson after Peterborough win the 2014 EFL Trophy
Darren Ferguson has been in charge for 367 Peterborough United games, winning 161 and leading them to three promotions and victory in the 2014 EFL Trophy at Wembley

Peterborough United have appointed former manager Darren Ferguson as their new boss after sacking Steve Evans, with the club sixth in League One.

Ferguson, 46, who has had two previous spells as Posh manager, has agreed a deal until the end of the season.

Evans, 56, and his assistant Paul Raynor, were 'released from their contracts' after Saturday's goalless draw with fourth-placed Charlton.

Evans took over on 1 March 2018 and won 21 of his 52 games in charge.

Ferguson will be assisted by Gavin Strachan and will take charge of his first game against Bristol Rovers on Tuesday.

"With 17 games to go in the League One season, it was important that an appointment of a new manager was done swiftly and with somebody that has knowledge of the football club and has managed in this division," a Peterborough United statement read.

"Everybody at Peterborough United are focussed on ending the season with a promotion push and with that in mind, we are pleased to appoint Darren Ferguson as our new manager on a deal that runs until the end of the season."

Ferguson, the son of former Manchester United manager Sir Alex, first took charge at London Road in January 2007 and led the club to back-to-back promotions from League Two to the Championship before leaving by mutual consent in November 2009 when Peterborough were bottom of the table.

He returned in January 2011 after succeeding Gary Johnson and went on to win the League One play-off final at the end of that season.

He kept the club in the Championship for two seasons before they were relegated in 2013 with 54 points - the highest-ever tally accrued by a side that has gone down from the second tier - and left the following February with the club 15th in League One.

Ferguson went on to manage Doncaster Rovers, guiding them to promotion to League One in May 2017.

'Clash of personalities'

Darragh MacAnthony (left) and Steve Evans
Peterborough chairman and real estate millionaire Darragh MacAnthony (left) appointed Steve Evans (right) almost 11 months ago

Evans succeeded Grant McCann at the Peterborough helm with the club eighth in the table, but Posh missed out on the play-offs, eventually finishing ninth.

He has lived near the city for 30 years and said when he was appointed that Peterborough were "probably the second club that's closest to my heart, the first being Glasgow Celtic".

He began this season with five straight league wins. But results have not carried on in the same vein - Posh have won just twice in the league since the start of December and are 11 points off leaders Luton Town and five behind fifth-placed Sunderland, who have two games in hand.

"We've had it before where we've thought surely it could have gone on a little longer, let's wait until the end of the season, and once again in this case that was probably the first thought," long-serving Peterborough United broadcaster Edwin Overland told BBC Radio Cambridgeshire.

"But once again Darragh MacAnthony has shown that he's trigger-happy and he wants improvement, he wants results, he wants almost a guarantee that Posh are going to get back in the Championship and he doesn't want any dithering along the way.

"In this case there might well have been a clash of personalities and they haven't seen eye to eye.

"I think things might have been simmering and boiling up, and it wasn't just the fact that they have drawn at home to Charlton that was the final straw, I think it's something that's been going on for some time."

Peterborough were the sixth side Evans had managed in the EFL, having first taken Boston United from the Southern League to what is now League Two and enjoying spells with Crawley, Rotherham, Leeds and Mansfield.

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