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Dundalk boss 'not happy' as FAI make move for Higgins to join Kenny's Ireland setup

Dundalk have confirmed that an approach has been made for assistant head coach Ruaidhri Higgins.

Higgins and Perth: Dundalk boss 'not happy' about the manner of FAI's approach.
Higgins and Perth: Dundalk boss 'not happy' about the manner of FAI's approach.
Image: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

DUNDALK BOSS VINNY Perth has hit out at the manner in which the FAI have made an approach for his club’s assistant head coach Ruaidhri Higgins to join the backroom team of new Ireland manager Stephen Kenny.

35-year-old Higgins, who won a league title with the club in 2014, has been Perth’s assistant at Oriel Park for the past 16 months and the move by the FAI has been confirmed by Dundalk this evening.

The former midfielder played under Kenny at both Dundalk and Derry City before then joining his coaching staff as an opposition analyst at Dundalk.

But Perth has expressed his frustration that Higgins, a key part of his setup, has been targeted for a departure despite being under contract until the end of the season.

“It’s disappointing that a member of staff that I rate so highly has been approached to move elsewhere,” Perth told Dundalk’s website.

“The manner in which the approach was conducted is something that I’m not happy about and I will leave that with our board of directors and the FAI to deal with.

“I feel very strongly about protecting our staff and players and the board have been exceptional with this since I took over. We have people under contract and those contracts need to be honoured and respected.”

Perth acknowledged that it was a ‘wonderful opportunity’ for Higgins to potentially make a move to work with the international team.

“We fully understand that this is a wonderful opportunity for Ruaidhri,” he said. “I have always said that to win a league title you need league winning staff and I have definitely had that. He has played a key part in our success.

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“My job now is to protect Dundalk FC and I have time on my side to make whatever decisions need to be made over the next couple of weeks.”

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Fintan O'Toole

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