Vinny Perth has departed as Dundalk manager for the second time in 15 months as speculation Stephen O'Donnell could make a sensational return to the club intensifies.

A statement from the club read: "We can confirm that Dundalk FC and Vinny Perth have parted ways.

"Everyone at the club would like to thank Vinny for the immense contribution he has made to Dundalk FC over the past nine years. His name will always be linked to a glorious spell in the club's history.

"Vinny will always remain a much-loved, respected and significant figure amongst Dundalk FC supporters. We wish him, and his family, the very best of luck going forward and will always welcome them back to Oriel Park in the future."

Perth was now Ireland manager Stephen Kenny's assistant during a gloriously successful period for the club and took over as head coach in 2019, leading Dundalk to the title and three other trophies that year.

He was dismissed in August 2020 after the Lilywhites' Champions League qualifier defeat to Slovenian side Celje but was sensationally rehired last June by former owners PEAK6 when Dundalk were eighth in the table.

Dundalk eventually finished a difficult season in sixth, six points off the European places, but a consortium including former owner Andy Connolly bought the club from PEAK6 earlier this month and appear to have now chosen to go in a different direction next season.

O'Donnell, a former player and backroom staff member under Kenny, led St Patrick's Athletic to victory in the FAI Cup on Sunday.

However he is out of contract and could be a target for the Louth club with a view to a shock exit from Inchicore.