Clarke turns to rugby union great for Cup motivation

Captain Darren Clarke is happy to accept the tag of underdogs as Europe go in search of an unprecedented fourth successive Ryder Cup victory.

United States captain Davis Love's assertion he had assembled "the best golf team, maybe, ever" has also not gone unnoticed by the Europeans.

Miller, who is regarded as one of the greatest players of his generation and won both the US Open and British Open, reckons Europe will get stuffed. "You know what they say, opinions are like. we all have one", said Garcia. Everybody is allowed to have their own opinions.

"I think the most important thing is knowing that it's not a done deal", Garcia said.

"At the end of the day, you don't win Ryder Cups with your mouth", Garcia said.

Team USA has more major titles in their roster, making them a favorite to win this year!

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Three successive defeats prompted the setting up of an American task force into the repeated failures, the upshot of which has seen a new motto - 12strong - a group dinner at Jack Nicklaus's house, a team outing to Gillette Stadium in Boston and a pre-Ryder Cup visit to Minneapolis last week before a speech from Michael Phelps at a team meal last night.

Thinking that his singles match with Keegan Bradley at Medinah started at 12:25pm, McIlroy was still at the team hotel when he got a panicked phone call telling him he had 25 minutes to get to the first tee. "We're always not supposed to win".

In the fevered environment of high-profile team tussles, these are exactly the kind of phrases that tend to get printed out on paper and plastered up on the changing room wall so players can roar their disapproval at them and, in time honoured tradition, ram the words down the throats of the opposition.

O'Connell, who led Ireland to Six Nations Championship success in 2014 and 2015, was invited to Hazeltine by European team captain Darren Clarke. I was in constant contact with him and that's what he said he needed from me.

"Whenever we are going up against one of the greatest teams ever assembled, that's motivation enough, just to say, how good a victory would this be if we go out and beat these guys on their home soil?"

"Yeah, they are pretty much motivating factors", García said. His players heard the comment, some of them laughed about it, none appear to have forgotten. "I feel very fortunate and privleged that he's there to join us". He was on the verge of a loss to Stewart Cink at Celtic Manor that might have cost Europe the Ryder Cup. I had been to Ryder Cups before - I had played in the Junior Ryder Cup, I was at Oakland Hills in 2004, I was at the Ryder Cup in 2006 at the K Club. "I'm certainly not anxious about it and I'm just looking forward to the whole thing kicking off and starting on Friday morning". Obviously you've got to match game styles for the team format and you have to match personalities as well. "And once you play it, you figure out, wait a minute. Our team is more than ready to handle the occasion, to handle what we need to do", McIlroy said. That's always just been a natural fit for us. "So I think sometimes you can "over-team" it a little bit and try too hard instead of it just happening naturally".

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