• Tells Golf Digest players want him to take the lead
• However, he adds: "I'm not a PGA of America guy"
FRED COUPLES | RYDER CUP
Fred Couples has claimed that he has the backing of the American players to become the next US Ryder Cup captain.
Couples, who has led his side to victory in the last three consecutive Presidents Cups, told Golf Digest that the side that lost at Gleneagles in September – along with the sidelined Tiger Woods – reached out to him in the aftermath of that defeat to give him their endorsement for the 2016 match at Hazeltine.
"When they all got home, they said, 'We need you to do this’,” Couples told the US-based mag.
The 55-year-old, however, added that his appointment as Tom Watson’s successor is far from cut and dried, adding: "You know, I'm not a PGA of America guy."
"I make the players released because I'm just another guy" - Fred Couples
Even so, the PGA and its new Ryder Cup ‘Task Force’ would be foolish to overlook both the credentials of the formers Masters champion. As well as his success at the helm of the Presidents Cup side, Couples is also enormously popular with the players.
“I make relaxed because I'm just another guy,” he said of his own brand of captaincy.
Couples is one of a number of candidates in the running to replace Watson as the American skipper.
Paul Azinger, pictured above, who steered the side to victory in 2008, has been widely tipped for a second stint, whilst Steve Stricker – one of Watson’s assistants at Gleneagles – is also reckoned to be in the running. David Toms, Mark O’Meara and former world No.1 David Duval are others believed to be under consideration.
Whoever does get the job will be expected to end a wretched run of results that has seen the US lose the last three Ryder Cups in succession, as well as eight of the last ten.
Fred Couples: The man for the job?
Would Fred Couples be your pick for the 2016 US Ryder Cup captaincy? Leave your thoughts in our ‘Comments’ section below.