Ryder Cup 2021 Team Guide, Odds and Favorites as Team USA Takes on Europe

Few events in the sporting calendar come with the excitement, tribalism and passion that the Ryder Cup brings, which is why sport's hollow year felt even quieter when it was cancelled in 2020 due to the pandemic.

A year later than planned, the Ryder Cup is back and the pent-up excitement will make for one of the exhilarating tournaments yet.

On home soil at Whistling Straits in Wisconsin, Team USA find themselves in the familiar position of being the 8/15 favorites on Betfair to win back the title, while team Europe are 6/4 to lift the trophy.

Europe have already been on the charm offensive by arriving at Wednesday's practice session sporting green and gold tops and cheeseheads of the Green Bay Packers to win over local support, which is rule one when entering as the underdogs.

In fact, Europe thrive when billed as outsiders. Historical Betfair odds dating back to 2000 reveals that four of the seven Ryder Cups Europe have won since 2002 came when they were pre-tournament underdogs — while the U.S. have won just two in nine attempts despite being the bookie's favorites five times.

Naturally, playing at home and travel restrictions limiting the number of away supporters favors the U.S. team, but clearly, this band of European brothers thrive as underdogs, so don't completely count them out.

As for the stars of the show, crucially, all 12 Team USA members are ranked in the world's top 21, however, six are yet to play in the Ryder Cup. Meanwhile, Team Europe only have four members that rank inside the world's top 25.

Team USA pose with Ryder Cup
Captain Steve Stricker of team United States (L) and Jordan Spieth of team USA pose with the Ryder Cup at Whistling Straits in Wisconsin. Getty Images

It will be youth versus experience at this year's Ryder Cup with Team USA fielding six rookies compared to Team Europe's three. Padraig Harrington's side also boast Ryder Cup veterans in Lee Westwood, Ian Poulter and Sergio Garcia.

Rory McIlroy is set to play in his sixth Ryder Cup and is 5/1 to finish as Team Europe's top scorer and only trails the 7/2 favorite Jon Rahm.

Unsurprisingly, Rahm, the world's No.1 golfer, is the 7/1 favorite to finish as the top combined points scorer at the tournament in Wisconsin with Justin Thomas (15/2) and Jordan Spieth (9/1) also in the running. No American has finished as the top combined points scorer since 1995, which is somewhat down to stronger teams not relying so much on individuals.

Ryder Cup odds

Betfair - To lift the Ryder Cup trophy

USA 8/15

Europe 6/4

Betfair - Top combined points scorer

Jon Rahm 7/1

Justin Thomas 15/2

Jordan Spieth 9/1

Patrick Cantlay 10/1

Dustin Johnson 11/1

Rory McIlroy 12/1

Xander Schauffele 12/1

Viktor Hovland 13/1

Bryson DeChambeau 14/1

Brooks Koepka 18/1

Collin Morikawa 18/1

Paul Casey 22/1

Betfair - Top Europe points scorer

Viktor Hovland 7/1

Tommy Fleetwood 8/1

Sergio Garcia 9/1

Shane Lowry 9/1

Paul Casey 10/1

Ian Poulter 11/1

Tyrrell Hatton 12/1

Matthew Fitzpatrick 14/1

Lee Westwood 20/1

Bernd Wiesberger 22/1

Betfair - Top USA points scorer

Justin Thomas 11/2

Brooks Koepka 15/2

Bryson Dechambeau 15/2

Dustin Johnson 15/2

Jordan Spieth 15/2

Patrick Cantlay 15/2

Xander Schauffele 15/2

Collin Morikawa 9/1

Tony Finau 10/1

Scottie Scheffler 11/1

Daniel Berger 16/1

Harris English 16/1

Betfair - Ryder Cup specials

Hole in one to be score 3/1

Any hole to be halved in an eagle 15/8

Best bet

He's the top-ranked player in the world and his form is a class above his teammates, so there are plenty worse bets than backing Jon Rahm to be Europe's top scorer at 7/2.

Ryder Cup teams

Team USA:
Collin Morikawa, Dustin Johnson, Bryson DeChambeau, Brooks Koepka, Justin Thomas, Patrick Cantlay, Tony Finau, Xander Schauffele, Jordan Spieth, Harris English, Daniel Berger, Scottie Scheffler. Captain: Steve Stricker.

Team Europe: John Rahm, Tommy Fleetwood, Tyrrell Hatton, Bernd Wiesberger, Rory McIlroy, Viktor Hovland, Paul Casey, Matt Fitzpatrick, Lee Westwood, Sergio Garcia, Shane Lowry, Ian Poulter. Captain: Padraig Harrington.

What's been said?

Team USA's Bryson DeChambeau has been playing down his prickly relationship with Brooks Koepka, Koepka has previously accused DeChambeau of slow play, while DeChambeau poked fun at Koepka's physique.

"A lot of this social media stuff has definitely been driven by a lot of external factors, not necessarily us two," DeChambeau said. "We had some great conversations during Tour Championship week when we had dinner. Then this week I sat down and had dinner with him last night, and it was fine."

Meanwhile, Team Europe captain Harrington has promised to follow in the footsteps of 2018 Ryder Cup-winning captain, Thomas Bjorn, by getting a tattoo if his side beat Team USA.

He said: "I am delighted that that's all they ask for – I'd have given up a lot more – so yes, I will be getting a tattoo. If my team produce a winning week, I will be getting a tattoo to mark the occasion, and I'm very comfortable that they only asked that much of me because I would have given more."

Tale of the tape

The last five Ryder Cup results:

2010: Team Europe 14½ - Team USA 13½

2012: Team USA 13½ - Team Europe 14½

2014: Team Europe 16½ - Team USA 11½

2016: Team USA 17 - Team Europe 11

2018: Team Europe 17½ - Team USA 10½

For the latest Ryder Cup odds, visit Betfair. 18+ please gamble responsibly.