The article is titled "Phil Micklson's outburst against Tom Watson shows the difference between the winning and losing teams." The cutline reads "The Europeans have developed a tight bond and winning mentality that the Americans can only dream about."
Phil Mickelson’s take-down of Tom Watson’s leadership here was surely the most public denunciation of a captain by a player in Ryder Cup history. Should it be allowed to overshadow Europe’s latest triumph? No, but it was part of the same win-lose drama.
Mickelson’s disloyalty in comparing Watson’s ineffective captaincy to Paul Azinger’s stewardship in 2008 here in a packed press conference chamber – rather than the team room, where the grudge might have been aired – was symbolic of the difference between the protagonists.
On the one side: Europe, committed, disciplined, impassioned, blood-brotherly.
On the other: USA, fragile, ambivalent, unstructured and willing to knife the captain in front of a bank of cameras.
As Mickelson argued for Azinger’s “pod” system and constant dialogue with the players the rookies on Watson’s team looked stunned. Old Jim Furyk’s face darkened into thunder.
After another demoralising defeat, Mickelson had sent a damaging news story spinning round the world; one which every American player will have to deal with when they would rather be pulling the duvet over their head.