All it takes is one look at the United States' Ryder Cup roster to understand why Team USA is the favourite to retain the trophy this weekend at Le Golf National in France.
The stars and stripes have Ryder Cup rookies playing at the top of their game and veterans who have experienced victory and defeat against Team Europe.
Before the sides tee it up on Friday, here are four reasons why the Ryder Cup will stay with Team USA.
STRONG CAPTAIN’S PICKS CARRYING MOMENTUM
Team USA captain Jim Furyk and Europe's Thomas Bjorn had tough calls to make when finalising their 2018 teams, but for very different reasons.
While Bjorn shuffled through slim pickings before naming struggling players like Sergio Garcia and Henrik Stenson to his team, Furyk had his choice of several Americans playing at a high level.
Bryson DeChambeau went from a fringe candidate to a must-add after winning The Northern Trust and Dell Technologies Championship back-to-back in the FedEx Cup Playoffs, jumping from number 21 to number 12 in the world rankings. He arrives in Paris ranked eighth.
Though Tony Finau was 15th in Ryder Cup points, his play in major championships and recent tournaments impressed Furyk enough to take him over Xander Schauffele, Matt Kuchar and Kevin Kisner.
Then there is Tiger Woods, who forced his way onto the team by becoming a staple at the top of major leaderboards once again and validated that decision with his win at the Tour Championship.
Compare that to Garcia and Stenson, who despite their Ryder Cup experience, simply are not playing well.
Garcia has fallen to number 28 in the world golf rankings since missing the cut at the Masters and seven of his last 12 events. As for Stenson, he has finished better than tied-29th just once in his last six tournaments.
NO SUCH THING AS HOME-COURSE ADVANTAGE
Members of the American team have scouted Le Golf National, including Justin Thomas, who finished tied-eighth at the Open De France at the course in July. But, by and large, the narrow fairways of the par-71 course will be new to the team.
But, to be frank, who cares? Top young players on Team USA have proved that course familiarity has no bearing on their performance.
Brooks Koepka had never played a competitive run at either Shinnecock Hills or Bellerive Country Club before this season, but he won both the U.S. Open and the US PGA Championship.
Finau, in his first Masters, finished tied-10th after badly dislocating his ankle in the par-three tournament.
No, Le Golf National has not been tamed by a golfer on this roster. And, yes, Team USA has not won a Ryder Cup on European soil since 1993, but this crop of American golfers has proven to be a different breed.
IT IS ABOUT CHEMISTRY, NOT EXPERIENCE
If Ryder Cup experience was the be-all and end-all, Phil Mickelson would not be considered Team USA's weakest link as he plays in his 12th edition of the tournament.
What does matter, however, is how well the team plays together.
Seven of the 12 Team USA golfers played on the victorious 2016 team, and others do far more together than just golf. Thomas, Rickie Fowler and Jordan Spieth, some of the closest golfers on PGA Tour, vacation together every year and even share putters on occasion.
"You've seen the relationships between the young guys on the American team, [they are a] very tight-knit group of guys,” top European player Justin Rose said over the weekend. "They're obviously the new blood of the Ryder Cup, and I think that's definitely changed things.”
Even guys you would not expect to get along, Spieth and Patrick Reed, form one of the Team USA's most successful pairs in Ryder Cup history as they have won five out of a potential seven points together over the last two tournaments.
TEAM USA SIMPLY HAS A BETTER COLLECTION OF TALENT
This is not to slight Rose, Rory McIlroy, Jon Rahm, Tommy Fleetwood or even Ryder Cup machine Ian Poulter, but Team Europe objectively has an inferior collection of golfers when compared to this version of Team USA.
This year’s U.S. team has 31 collective majors among it, including three of the last four and six of the last eight. It features three of the top four ranked players in the world, six of the top 10 and 11 of the top 20. And Mickelson is just outside in 25th.
Since the last #RyderCup:
16 de octubre 2018
|Germany suffer six defeats in a year for first time|
|Many clubs have asked about Piatek - agent|
|Bartomeu: Barca open to defensive reinforcements after Vermaelen injury|
|Bonn spoil PAOK´s landmark European game|
|Konta conquers Mertens in Moscow|
|Republic of Ireland 0 Wales 1: Wilson stunner moves Giggs´ side top|
|France 2 Germany 1: Griezmann delivers Low blow as Les Bleus reign in Paris|
|Belgium 1 Netherlands 1: Groeneveld cancels out Mertens strike|
|Argentina 0 Brazil 1: Miranda heads late winner after rivalry fails to ignite|
|Messi would struggle in this Manchester United team – Scholes|
|Falcons place Devonta Freeman on injured reserve|
|Westbrook ruled out of Thunder opener|
|Wilder´s team open to Joshua talks|
|Brentford appoint Thomas Frank as new head coach|
|England´s perfect performance sets the standard - Trippier|
|Odell Beckham Jr. needs to create headlines on the field, says Giants owner|
|Robshaw joins list of England absentees|
|Chile need goals from Sanchez despite United form - Rueda|
|Modric reveals Ronaldo respect, ´will never play with´ Messi|
|Osaka can be one of the greats, says coach Sascha Bajin|
|Liverpool´s Naby Keita carried off injured in Guinea match|
|Duminy to miss Australia tour for shoulder surgery|
|F1 Raceweek: Ferrari ready to ´challenge the impossible´ as Hamilton nears title|
|Umesh replaces injured Thakur in ODI squad|
|IAAF delay implementation of testosterone ruling amid Semenya challenge|
|Fakhar and Sarfraz lead Pakistan recovery after Lyon blitz|
|Japan see off Uruguay in seven-goal thriller|
|Arda Turan given huge fine by Istanbul Basaksehir after alleged brawl with singer|
|Busquets no better or worse than Dier – does Opta data back up Allardyce claim?|
|United boss Mourinho charged for alleged post-match comments by FA|
|Halep withdraws from Kremlin Cup ahead of WTA Finals|
|Renato Sanches eager for further Bayern Munich minutes|
|Nations League standings: Promotion, relegation and race for finals|
|Windies coach Law banned for ´inappropriate comments´ in India Test|
|Carrick denies Manchester United stars are ´not trying´|
|Ferrari struggling under pressure of chasing Mercedes, says Massa|
|Australia desperately need Smith and Warner back - Warne|
|Draxler warns Germany: Mbappe has 300 hp!|
|Draymond Green says Warriors will have to ´bring it´ every night in the West|
|England´s ´wonderful bravery´ leaves Southgate excited for the future|
|Jayasuriya: I always conduct myself with integrity and transparency|
|Northern Ireland stars hurt by lack of club football, says O´Neill|
|Rodgers inspires late Packers comeback|
|Brewers blank Dodgers to take 2-1 NLCS lead|
|Cavaliers, Nance agree to four-year extension|
|Ramos wants Spain to believe in Luis Enrique´s team|
|De Laurentiis: I´ve spoken to Genoa and agent about Piatek|
|Kaka tips bright future for Paqueta after Milan agreement|
|Suns star Booker set to return for season opener|
|Warriors coach Kerr not expecting fast start from NBA champs|
|Fultz to start for 76ers as Brown eyes NBA Finals|
|Maltese champions Valletta want Usain Bolt|
|It would have been normal to kill them! Luis Enrique slams abysmal Spain|
|Seahawks, Trail Blazers owner Paul Allen dies aged 65|
|Red Sox ace Sale released from hospital, still set for game five|
|Beer-throwing fan banned by Patriots|
|Southgate lauds ´tremendous´ attackers after famous Spain win|
|Djokovic closing in on summit as he scales new heights|
|Monaco the natural move for Henry - Martinez|
|Ending England drought a ´beautiful feeling´ – Sterling|
15 de octubre 2018
|Halep to face Pavlyuchenkova in Moscow comeback|
|NBA 2018-19: Five non-LeBron James storylines to follow|
|Spain 2 England 3: Kane inspires Three Lions as Sterling ends drought in style|
|Bosnia-Herzegovina 2 Northern Ireland 0: Dzeko double leaves O´Neill´s side on the brink|
|Mannarino stops the rot in Moscow|
|Neymar pleased Brazil will not face Messi in Argentina clash|
|Buccaneers fire defensive coordinator Mike Smith after loss to Falcons|
|´Surprised´ Deschamps accepts he could´ve made more effort with Koscielny|
|Kuwait 0 Australia 4: Socceroos deliver win for new coach Arnold|
|Van Dijk fit for Liverpool return - Koeman|