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Rory McIlroy insists Brooks Koepka deserves to be on the US Ryder Cup team, but he does not share the same sentiment for LIV’s European golfers.

Koepka jumped to second in Team USA’s automatic qualifying spots with his victory at the PGA Championship as he became the first active LIV player to win a major at Oak Hill.

The five-time major champion is still eligible to compete in Zach Johnson’s team through his association with the PGA of America, but European LIV players will almost certainly not be teeing it up in Rome.

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LIV players Sergio Garcia, Lee Westwood and Ian Poulter all ruled themselves out of contention for the biennial showdown with their resignations from the DP World Tour.

The trio, who have featured in 28 Ryder Cups between them, handed in their tour cards in response to mounting suspensions and fines issued by the European circuit.

Jon Rahm spoke passionately on Tuesday about his frustration that ‘politics got in the way’ of him rekindling his Spanish partnership with Garcia in blue-and-gold.

But McIlroy told the Guardian last year he felt ‘betrayed’ by some of his European teammates who jumped ship for the Saudi-backed series.

And the Northern Irishman clearly does not share the Masters champion’s view on LIV involvement in Luke Donald’s side.

“I certainly think Brooks deserves to be on the United States team,” Mcilroy said ahead of the Memorial Tournament.

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“I think with how he’s played, I mean, he’s second in the U.S. standings, only played two counting events.

“I don’t know if there’s anyone else on the LIV roster that would make the team on merit and how they’re playing. But Brooks is definitely a guy that I think deserves to be on the U.S. team.

“But I have different feelings about the European team and the other side and sort of how that has all transpired and, yeah, I don’t think any of those guys should be a part of the European team.”

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Ben Parsons joined bunkered as a Content Producer in 2023 and is the man to come to for all of the latest news, across both the professional and amateur games. Formerly of The Mirror and Press Association, he is a member at Halifax Golf Club and is a long-suffering fan of both Manchester United and the Wales rugby team.

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