DUNDALK WILL BE met by a familiar face when they arrive at Gannon Park later today.
The Lilywhites are in FAI Ford Cup third round action tonight and have been drawn with Leinster Senior League outfit Malahide United – who these days are managed by none other than Vinny Perth.
A former striker, the Dubliner won FAI Cups with Longford Town in 2003 and 2004 and enjoyed stints at St Patrick’s Athletic and Shamrock Rovers before arriving at Oriel Park and featuring for the club during the 2007 season.
Perth, now 36, took charge of Malahide in 2010 and last season led the seasiders to the Senior 1 title.
On his time with Dundalk, Perth is disappointed he couldn’t make more of an impact.
“It’s a huge club,” he told TheScore. “I really enjoyed it. I was injured for a lot of that season, however, and look back on it with a little regret as I wasn’t able to leave my mark on the club.
“It’s a a no pressure situation for us. We’ve only just started our season and it’s not the be all and end all. If the game was in six weeks’ time we’d give a better account of ourselves but it’s the premier cup competition and we will give it the respect it deserves.
“With this level of football the commitment levels aren’t the same as the players don’t get paid and we have three lads just back from holiday.”
Perth isn’t the only former League of Ireland veteran in their ranks and ex-Ireland international Glen Crowe has been banging in the goals since joining the club last year. Crowe was instrumental in their title win and was on target in the previous rounds of this competition, against College Corinthians and Blarney United.
“He’s been outstanding for us in the two year he’s been here,” Perth added. “It doesn’t make sense to me why he still isn’t playing League of Ireland and you only have to look at the impact Jason Byrne has made at Bray this season.
“People are often too quick to write off players.”
On their immaculate pitch, which would give any Airtricity League side’s surface a run for its money and is used as a training ground for Giovanni Trapattoni’s Irish team, Malahide will be no pushovers despite the fact that they may be slightly short of match fitness after playing just one league game so far – a 3-0 defeat to Mount Merrion last weekend.
Dundalk sit bottom of the Premier Division title and have failed to win a match since seeing off St Pat’s CY in the second round back in May.
“It is going to be a tricky tie,” defender Liam Burns told DundalkFc.com when the draw was made last month. “They are a decent team, which is shown by them getting this far. We have got to prepare for it the same as if we were playing another Premier Division team.
It’s another step in the direction we want to go but we cannot take anything for granted. It’s going to be tough; they’re at home and they will probably fancy their chances.
“When I was at Bohemians, we played them in the FAI Cup. It’s a lovely pitch but it’s a difficult place to go because the wind is always up with it being beside the seaside.
“We know how hard it’s going to be. But it’s a winnable game; we’ll be looking to go through to the last eight, and as far as we can in the competition.”
Here’s a full list of the FAI Ford Cup third round ties (7.45pm kick offs unless stated):
- Shamrock Rovers v Cork City, 7.05pm (Live on RTE2)
- Bohemians v Avondale United
- Drogheda United v Wexford Youths
- Malahide United v Dundalk
- UCD v Derry City
- Waterford United v Mervue United
- Shelbourne v Cherry Orchard, 8pm