Nine-time All-Ireland winner Jackie Tyrrell says Wexford have stagnated in 2018 and argues that their sweeper system is dated as teams have evolved ways to get around it.
Wexford exited the championship at the quarter-final stage for the second year running following their seven-point defeat at the hands of Clare in Páirc Ui Chaoimh on Saturday.
While the 2017 summer was seen as progressive by most Wexford fans, with the side gaining promotion from 1B and beating Kilkenny in the championship for the first time in 13 years, the 2018 season was a somewhat flatter affair and they've now suffered three big defeats in their last three games against Tier 1 opposition.
RTÉ hurling analyst Tyrrell identified Lee Chin's form as symptomatic of their malaise, arguing he looked "ragged" and unsure of where he should be playing.
And he argued that their sweeper system is no longer doing them any favours against the top teams.
"They'd a very good year last year and this year, I feel they just stagnated.
"I was at the last round of the round robin when they played Kilkenny. And I left that night after Wexford had coughed up a nine-point lead and I said, "the sweeper has actually been buried tonight in Nowlan Park."
"I just feel it's a dated system. It has brought Wexford to a certain level. The top teams now know how to beat it. We've seen Kilkenny know how to beat it, Tipperary, Clare know how to beat it now.
"So, I feel that they need a new direction. They need something fresh. We've seen examples of where Sean Murphy (usually employed at sweeper) can just be taken out of the game.
"So, Wexford are probably at a crossroads right now."
Jackie Tyrell on Wexford: "The sweeper system is dated... I feel that they need a new direction, something fresh" pic.twitter.com/2RZihyDhN6— The Sunday Game (@TheSundayGame) July 15, 2018