Waterford need to find a balance between the style of play they employed under former manager Derek McGrath and the vision of their new manager Páraic Fanning, according to The Sunday Times’s Denis Walsh.
Denis Walsh and former Clare hurler Jamesie O’Connor were previewing the weekend's hurling on Off The Ball and both agreed that Waterford need to become harder to breakdown.
“There is definitely an element of transition from the way that Waterford have been playing the last few years and the way that Páraic Fanning wants them to play now”, Walsh said.
Walsh added that while people used to get frustrated at Waterford’s style of play, they now need to incorporate their past defensive strength into the progression Fanning is trying to implement onto the team.
“That [style of play] was there for a reason. That was there for a purpose. Derek put down a very tough first season back when Waterford were very easy to break down. There must be a balance between getting back to being hard to beat while moving on with Páraic Fanning’s vision.”
Walsh said that this was something that wasn’t seen in Waterford’s defeat to Clare last weekend, which he described as a “one point hammering” and thus made victory against Tipperary this Saturday unlikely.
"Already it’s hard to see where Waterford can find enough improvement to beat Tipperary in Thurles", he added.
Jamesie O’Connor agreed that defence will be the most important aspect of the game for Waterford ahead of this weekend's clash.
“Waterford need to defend very, very well. I also think they are going to need to find a way to score a couple of goals.”
"Outside the chance that Stephen Bennett got before half-time, they didn't really look like they could find a way to open up Clare at the back. I can't see them winning in Thurles without getting two goals and that's a big priority for Páraic Fanning to figure out how to do that.”