Team Europe have won six of the last seven Ryder Cups.
The stings of that fact is so painful, that Team USA have created a Task Force to bring the trophy back to their side of the pond.
With Team Europe having such an inexperienced team, the US benefitting from a home Ryder Cup and the fact that recent years have been remarkably close, here is why we should be worried about Team USA.
The Europeans have six first timers teeing it up this weekend.
A lack of understanding of what it is like to be in such a cauldron of chaos is definitely a negative.
There simply is no feeling like the having the adrenaline of match play coursing through your veins. This will only be topped up by the horde of Americans ready to shout “Baba Booey!!/Mashed Potato!!” after every shot.
Some thrive under this pressure, think Patrick Reed in Gleneagles and Ian Poulter in Medinah.
However, the reality with Match Play golf is that you have to try and grind out victories. Instead of holing monster putts, often those who don’t make mistakes are the ones who bring home their point. This is especially difficult when your caddie is adding 10% to your yardages to account for how pumped up you are.
If Thomas Pieters, Andy Sullivan, Rafa Cabrera Bello, Chris Wood, and Matt Fitzpatrick, get the bad rub of the green, that is a sizable chunk of your team to carry on the shoulders of those more experienced.
Never underestimate the home crowd.
When a few bits of Red start appearing on the leader board and the momentum starts swinging the home team’s way, the home fans will sense things moving in their direction. Then the roars start getting bigger, the hole starts looking smaller and six footers start feeling much longer.
This is where the Vice Captains need to step in and have a little calm word.
Darren Clarke has put Napoleon Bonaparte’s quote on the wall for very good reason; ‘The Battlefield is a scene of constant chaos. The winner will be the one that controls that chaos.’
Europeans beware. Since 1983, the home side’s record is 11-5.
Memories of Boo Weekly riding his driver off the tee like a bucking bronco in 2008 should be a tidy reminder of what happens when the Americans get on a roll.
Closer than Ever
The last four Ryder Cups have an aggregate point’s score of +2 for Europe.
Both 2010 and 2012 were decided by a single point, with the Miracle at Medinah was simply, well a… Miracle.
The point is that with the strength of the American team [seven in the Top 20 and eleven in the Top 30 World Rankings] you can throw the history books out the window with regard to this year.
Big name players can intimidate their opponents simply by being opposite them on the tee box.
Who are you going to be more afraid of?
Sullivan or Walker
Wood or Kuchar
Koepka or Pieters
Plus, if you have Tiger Woods staring you down on a few holes, that will definitely add more squeaky to the bum time.
Fuel to the Fire
Danny Willett’s brother has well and truly set the Ryder Cup alight.
By calling the Americans ‘a baying mob of imbeciles’, fuel has been added to the already raging bonfire.
Davis Love III called his side ‘The Best Golf Team, maybe, ever assembled.’
Sergio rebutted that by saying Ryder Cups are not won with words…
Tiger (one of five assistant Captains) was kicked out of a Team photo that was only for the, er…, Team.
DJ has said he doesn’t want to play with Phil.
Jordan has been named the anchor of the US Team.
Darren Clarke has got Napoleon quotes on the European Changing Room Walls.
Lick your lips, put the phone on airplane mode, and cancel any plans that don’t involve a lazy boy, chicken wings, and a copious amount of Golf.
Welcome to the Ryder Cup.