Lee Westwood thinks Tiger Woods could have an "adverse" impact on the US Ryder Cup team. The former world number one is poised to serve as a vice-captain to Davis Love III at the Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska, Minnesota – but Westwood is uncertain what impact Woods will have on the hosts.
Woods, 40, has endured a difficult time as a player in past Ryder Cups. On this occasion, however, he will be a key member of Love III's support team as the US seek to stop Europe, led by Darren Clarke, from winning the cup for an unprecedented fourth time in a row.
"I don't know what impact there will be from having Tiger around," Westwood said, according to ESPN.com. "They have always struggled to find a partner for Tiger that's been successful. He could have an adverse effect in the team room. People have always seemed to try to do too much when they have partnered him. It might be different if he's one of the vice-captains, you don't know."
Westwood, 43, is a veteran of nine Ryder Cups and considers the US to be the favourites heading into the event next week. However, he also pointed out that the US will be under enormous pressure to perform in front of their home crowd.
"They have got a strong side and probably are favourites, but they haven't won it for a while and they are playing in front of a home crowd," Westwood said. "There is a lot of pressure on them. That is going to keep building in the next week or so and by the time the Ryder Cup comes around, it is going to be pretty intense for them."
Love III still has one wildcard pick remaining and is reportedly set to choose between Bubba Watson, Justin Thomas and Daniel Berger for the final place. But ahead of the much-anticipated event in the US, Westwood has questioned the team spirit of the hosts.
"There seem to have been issues about team spirit and chemistry," he said. "Love has not picked Bubba Watson and I don't know what that does for team spirit; he was first outside the points qualification [for automatic selection] and is No7 in the world."