Phil Brown accepted full responsibility for Preston's relegation from the npower Championship following the 1-0 home defeat to Cardiff and vowed to make wholesale changes over the summer.
Peter Whittingham's clinical sixth-minute strike from Craig Bellamy's low cross proved decisive as the famous old Lancashire outfit slid into their third tier of English football for the first time since 2000.
Brown, 51, arrived at Deepdale in January, tasked with keeping them in the second tier but it took him 13 games to register a win and, despite an impressive rally in recent weeks, it was not enough.
The result marked Preston's first relegation in 18 years and a visibly distraught Brown looked inconsolable as he pointed the finger at himself afterwards.
"I've just been upstairs and nearly broken down in front of the supporters because I hold myself responsible for the relegation - end of story," said the former Hull manager, who suffered only the second relegation of his long career in the game.
"You can say you came in too late or that the previous guy in charge was there too long, but I wouldn't have taken the job if I didn't think I could keep the club in the Championship."