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By ESPN Staff

Charlton given permission to speak to Preston boss

Preston have this granted Charlton permission to speak to Billy Davies over the vacant manager's position with the Barclays Premiership club.

Deepdale boss Davies has led the club to the Coca-Cola Championship play-offs for the last two seasons and is currently the bookmakers' favourite to take over at The Valley.

Preston chairman Derek Shaw revealed his decision to let Charlton talk to his manager was in the best interests of both parties.

He told his club's official website, www.pnefc.premiumtv.co.uk: 'I received a phone call from Charlton Athletic yesterday afternoon.

'They asked for permission to speak to Billy Davies (and) after discussing it with him it was agreed that permission would be granted.

'Billy Davies' representative will be in touch with Charlton today and I believe the meeting has been scheduled for Monday.

'The club felt that if permission had not been granted like is often the case things could have turned sour so we felt it was in the best interests of both parties to allow talks to take place.'

There has been plenty of speculation surrounding the 42-year-old Scot, but Charlton are the only club to make an official approach for him.

Peter Taylor last night withdrew from contention to become the new manager of the club, despite being interviewed for the position.