For the 44th time, and the 22nd occasion between Europe and the United States, the Ryder Cup will be at stake at the Marco Simone Golf and Country Club in Rome between Sept. 29-Oct. 1. With it, we’ve got plenty of pre-tournament 2023 Ryder Cup stats.

The USA has won 24 of the previous 43 Ryder Cup matches and comes into this event as the defending champions after producing a 19-9 win at Whistling Straits, the largest margin of victory ever in the modern era of the tournament (since 1979), captained on that occasion by Steve Stricker.

However, since switching to be a Team Europe opposition (rather than Great Britain or Great Britain & Ireland), it is the Europeans who have had the upper hand with 11 victories, with only two of the previous 43 Ryder Cups having ended in a tie: 1969 (16-16) and 1989 (14-14), after which Europe retained the cup having won the previous edition.

The United States has won two of the last three Ryder Cups, which is as many wins as in the previous 10 events, and it’ll be aiming to win back-to-back Ryder Cups for the first time in 30 years.

That’s because the last six Ryder Cups played on European soil have been won by the home team, with Team USA’s last such triumph coming in 1993 when the tournament was played in England at The Belfry (15-13).

Here’s a complete look ahead with the need-to-know facts and Ryder Cup records about the tournament as a whole, as well as each team’s captains and players.

Key Ryder Cup Insights

  • Seven of the last nine Ryder Cups have seen a final score gap of five or more points. The gap was never more than three points in each of the previous eight editions (1987 to 2002).
  • Since 1979, only four of the 21 Ryder Cups have seen a team overturn a deficit going into the final-day singles (1993, 1995, 1999, 2012).
  • The USA has won 62% of the singles sessions against Europe (13 out of 21) while Europe has the upper hand in fourball/foursomes, winning 43% of sessions to 35% for the USA (23% of tied sessions). However, the United States is on top in fourballs recently, with eight sessions won since 2008 to Europe’s three.
  • The U.S. team has won only two foursome sessions in its last seven Ryder Cups played on European soil: one in 2002 and the other in 2010.
  • Since 1979, only once has a team won all five sessions at a Ryder Cup – it was in 2006 when Europe posted its joint-largest margin of victory against the USA.
  • Since 1979, only three golfers have won all five sessions at a Ryder Cup: Larry Nelson (1979) and Dustin Johnson (2021) for the United States; Francesco Molinari (2018) for Europe.
  • Team Europe and Team USA both have four rookies at this year’s tournament. It’s only the fifth time in the modern era that the number of debutants is the same across both teams after 1981, 1993, 2004 and 2014.
  • This year’s Ryder Cup is the first to be played in Italy, and only the third to be held in continental Europe after Spain in 1997 and France in 2018, both of which produced a European victory.
  • Three Italians have played in the Ryder Cup: Costantino Rocca (1993, 1995, 1997), Francesco Molinari (2010, 2012, 2018) and his brother Edoardo (2010). Both Molinari brothers are vice-captains at the 2023 tournament.

Team Europe

The Captain: Luke Donald

As a player, Luke Donald won every single Ryder Cup he featured in (2004, 2006, 2010, 2012). He also collected 10.5 points out of a possible 15 (70%), the best scoring ratio among any European to have taken part in at least three Ryder Cups.

The last two English captains of a European Ryder Cup team have ended up on the losing side: Mark James in 1999 and Nick Faldo in 2008. Donald is the first Englishman to captain the European side on home soil since Tony Jacklin in 1989, the last time the event ended in a tie.

Key Team Europe Insights

  • The two players to have won at least three tournaments across the PGA and DP World Tours in 2023 will both feature for Europe at this year’s Ryder Cup: Jon Rahm (4) and Viktor Hovland (3).
  • This year’s European team has played a combined 87 matches at the Ryder Cup. Rory McIlroy and Justin Rose are responsible for 59% of these (51 out of 87). No other European player has featured in more than eight matches (Jon Rahm and Tommy Fleetwood).
  • Team Europe has four rookies making their Ryder Cup debut: Robert MacIntyre, Sepp Straka, Ludvig Åberg and Nicolai Højgaard. The only rookie to be the top points scorer for Europe at a Ryder Cup this century was Thomas Pieters in 2016.
  • There are nine different nationalities represented on Team Europe this year, a joint record in a Ryder Cup edition (also 1997, 2002, 2014).
  • There will be English (4) and Spanish (1) players at the Ryder Cup for the 22nd consecutive edition. In fact, England and Spain are the only European nations to have had at least one playing representative at every Ryder Cup edition since the introduction of Team Europe in 1979.
  • For the first time since 1995, neither Lee Westwood, Sergio Garcia, Ian Poulter or Paul Casey will form part of the European team. That event saw Europe stage a final-day singles comeback to take a 14.5-13.5 victory with a team featuring the likes of Colin Montgomerie and Bernhard Langer.

The Players

Jon Rahm is playing in his third Ryder Cup. He was the top points scorer for Europe in the last edition (3.5 points) and was also one of only two European players to feature in all five sessions alongside Viktor Hovland. He is also the last player to play against – and beat – Tiger Woods at a Ryder Cup, in the singles back in 2018 (2&1).

Rory McIlroy is making his seventh consecutive Ryder Cup appearance, the longest current run among European players. He has featured in all but one session at the tournament since his debut in 2010, the only exception coming in the Saturday foursomes of the 2021 edition. He’s also represented Europe in the opening singles match in each of the last three editions. The Northern Irishman has lost seven of his last 10 matches at the Ryder Cup (W3).

This is Viktor Hovland’s second Ryder Cup appearance. In 2021, he was one of only two Europeans to feature in all five sessions, but he didn’t win a single match (W0 L3 H2). The Norwegian was 16 under par across this year’s four majors, the best total to par of any European to have made the cut in all four tournaments, with only the USA’s Scottie Scheffler posting a better combined score (-18). Hovland also won the last two FedEx Cup events of 2023 on the PGA Tour: the BMW Championship and Tour Championship. He shot a combined 44 under par across the two events.

This is Tyrell Hatton’s third Ryder Cup appearance. The Englishman has so far won only two of his seven matches (L4 H1), both victories coming in the Saturday fourball sessions.

Matt Fitzpatrick will be looking to score his first points for Europe. He has lost all five of his matches at the Ryder Cup. This will be his first appearance on European soil after losing the 2016 and 2021 editions in the U.S.

Justin Rose is making his sixth Ryder Cup appearance. At age 43, he is more than six years older than any other Ryder Cup participant this year (Brian Harman, 36). The Englishman has picked up 75% of available points in foursomes at the Ryder Cup (7.5 out of 10). Only Tony Jacklin (76.9%) boasts a better ratio in foursomes among the 38 European players to have taken part in at least five sessions.

Tommy Fleetwood is making his third Ryder Cup appearance. His 62.5% scoring rate at the Ryder Cup (five points out of a possible eight) is the highest among all 12 European players at this year’s tournament. He has notably won four of his six fourball/foursome sessions, losing one and halving one.

Ryder Cup debutant Robert MacIntyre was the winner of the Italian Open on the Marco Simone course last year in a playoff with Matt Fitzpatrick. He is the first Scottish player to feature in the Ryder Cup since Stephen Gallacher in 2014 but will aim to be the first Scot to score points at the tournament since Paul Lawrie in 2012.

Shane Lowry is making his second Ryder Cup appearance after 2021. The Ireland star’s only point came in the Saturday fourballs alongside Tyrrell Hatton, beating the pair of Tony Finau and Harris English on 18 (1 up).

Sepp Straka is the second Austrian to play in a Ryder Cup, after Bernd Wiesberger in 2021. He’ll attempt to become the first Austrian to pick up a point after Wiesberger lost all three of his matches two years ago. He is also one of only four European players to have won on the PGA Tour in each of the last two years (2022 Honda Classic, 2023 John Deere) – the other three are Jon Rahm, Rory McIlroy and Matt Fitzpatrick.

Nicolai Højgaard will become the fourth Dane to play in a Ryder Cup after Thomas Bjørn (3 times), Søren Hansen (2008) and Thorbjørn Olesen (2018). He’s the first Ryder Cup golfer to be born in the 21st century – he’ll be 22 years and six months old when the tournament tees off in Rome. Højgaard had the honor of winning the first Italian Open to be held on the Marco Simone course, the venue for this year’s Ryder Cup, that victory coming in 2021.

Ludvig Åberg will become the 11th Swede to play at the Ryder Cup. Since 1993, every single edition of the Ryder Cup played on European soil has boasted a Swedish player in Team Europe’s ranks. Aged 23, Äberg only turned professional in June, with his first win as a pro coming at the Omega European Masters in September, the last counting tournament for European qualification. He is also yet to take part in a major championship.

Team USA

The Captain: Zach Johnson

U.S. captain Zach Johnson featured in five Ryder Cups as a player, losing his first four (2006, 2010, 2012, 2014) before winning on his last appearance in 2016. 59% of his matches were in foursomes (10 out of 17), the highest ratio of any American player to have played 10-plus matches at the Ryder Cup.

Key Team USA Insights

  • There is only a 10-year difference between the youngest and oldest player on Team USA this year – it’s the United States’ smallest age range in the modern era of the Ryder Cup (since 1979). At age 36, Brian Harman is also the ‘youngest’ oldest player of a U.S. Ryder Cup team in the modern era.
  • Team USA has four rookies making their Ryder Cup debut: Wyndham Clark, Brian Harman, Max Homa and Sam Burns. Two of the last four Ryder Cups have seen a rookie top the U.S. points-scorer list: Patrick Reed in 2014 and Justin Thomas in 2018.
  • Justin Thomas and Jordan Spieth have won eight of their 10 fourball/foursome matches together at the Ryder Cup and Presidents Cup. In the Ryder Cup, they have been paired together six times, with only the pairing of Spieth and Patrick Reed being used more frequently by the US in the history of the tournament (7).
  • As a pairing, Patrick Cantlay and Xander Schauffele have won six of their nine matches together at the Ryder Cup and Presidents Cup, including all five foursomes’ sessions.

The Players

This is Jordan Spieth’s fifth consecutive Ryder Cup appearance, winning two Ryder Cups (both on U.S. soil) and losing two (both on European soil). His singles record is one of the worst among American players, having won none of his four attempts (L3 H1). He has played more matches at the Ryder cup than any of the other 2023 Team USA members (18) and has so far picked up more on European soil (5.5 points from 9 matches) than in the U.S. (4 points from 9 matches).

This is a fourth consecutive Ryder Cup appearance for Brooks Koepka. He’s so far unbeaten in singles matches, winning two and halving one. In fact, only three U.S. golfers have played more singles matches at the Ryder Cup without ever losing one: Tom Kite (7), Paul Azinger and Tony Lema (4). His victory at this year’s PGA Championship made Koepka one of only three players to have won five or more majors in the 21st century, alongside Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson.

This is Scottie Scheffler’s second Ryder Cup appearance. In 2021, he remained unbeaten, picking up 2.5 points from a possible three. He’s only the third U.S. golfer to enter a Ryder Cup as the world No. 1 after Tiger Woods (four occasions) and Dustin Johnson (2018). He is also the only player to reach the semifinals in each of the last three WGC Match Play tournaments, having been a beaten finalist in 2021, the winner in 2022 and semifinalist in 2023.

Justin Thomas has picked up 17.5 points out of a possible 24 since his team format debut for the U.S. at the 2017 Presidents Cup. That’s more than any other American player in that span. It’s 4.5 points more than the second on this list, Jordan Spieth (13 out of a possible 19). Since 2017, Thomas has featured in 24 of the 25 sessions at the Ryder Cup and Presidents Cup combined. That’s five more than any other U.S. player (Dustin Johnson and Jordan Spieth, 19). Thomas was Team USA’s top points scorer in his first Ryder Cup in 2018 (4 out of 5). No American golfer had scored as many points in a Ryder Cup held on European soil since Larry Nelson, Jack Nicklaus and Lee Trevino in 1981 (4 each).

A Ryder Cup debutant in 2021, Xander Schauffele won all three of his fourball/foursome matches. He lost his singles match to Rory McIlroy (3&2). Schauffele is also one of only two players, along with Viktor Hovland, to have a top 20 finish in each of this year’s four majors.

Since 2019, Patrick Cantlay has collected 9.5 points out of a possible 13 across his three team appearances for the U.S. (6 out of 9 at the Presidents Cup, 3.5 out of 4 at the Ryder Cup). Only Justin Thomas has picked up more points in that span (10).

Ryder Cup debutant Max Homa has a 100% record from his only previous appearance for the USA as a professional, winning all four of his matches at the 2022 Presidents Cup.

2023 U.S. Open winner and Ryder Cup debutant Wyndham Clark represented the USA in the 2014 Palmer Cup. He didn’t win any of his four matches (W0 L2 H2), including losing the final day singles to Jon Rahm (4&3).

This year’s Open Championship winner Brian Harman is making his Ryder Cup debut. As an amateur, he represented the USA twice in the Walker Cup (2005 & 2009), during which time he lost only one of his seven matches, winning four and halving two.

Across the Walker Cup, Ryder Cup and Presidents Cup, Collin Morikawa has picked up 9.5 points out of a possible 11 for the USA. In his Ryder Cup debut in 2021, he won all three of his fourball/foursome matches.

This is Rickie Fowler’s fifth Ryder Cup appearance, with four of those taking place on European soil. He’s only won three of his previous 15 matches (L7 H5). 33% of his matches have ended in halves, the second highest ratio for an American player with a minimum 15 matches after Stewart Cink (37%).

This is Sam Burns’ first Ryder Cup appearance. He was victorious at this year’s WGC Match Play, winning all seven matches on his way to lifting the trophy. However, he didn’t win a single one of his five matches in his Presidents Cup debut last year (L3 H2), including 0.5 points out of a possible three alongside Scottie Scheffler.

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