The 49-year-old returned to Goodison Park from Newcastle in 2002 where he had been the academy director. Kenny Dalglish took him to St. James Park after the pair had worked together at Blackburn. For the past five and a half years has worked as assistant to David Moyes who made the move to Everton from Preston.
His playing career also took in Everton, for whom he made eighty appearances before moving on to play for Crystal Palace, Dundee United and Blackburn.
Irvine is committing to Preston until the end of the 2010/2011 season and will be unveiled to the media this afternoon at Deepdale.