World golf rankings would suggest the USA should dominate the European team in the Ryder Cup held in Paris this weekend. The trouble is, the rankings nearly always suggest this, but that’s not what has happened on the course. Right now, the 2018 Ryder Cup odds have the Americans favored at -105 versus the Europeans, who are priced at +125.
Of the past 16 Ryder Cup tournaments, Europe has won 11 and the United States just four, with one tie. In addition, the US hasn’t won in Europe since 1993.
Matchplay and team camaraderie seems to have brought out the best in the Europeans over the years, and three of this year’s European team in particular have spectacular records: Justin Rose has an 11-win, 6-loss, 2-tie record; Ian Poulter’s record is 12-4-2, and Sergio Garcia has gone 19-11-7.
Of the four other 2018 European team with past Ryder Cup experience (Francesco Molinari, Rory McIlroy, Paul Casey, and Henrik Stenson), only Molinari has a losing record, and he is currently in the best form of his life.
By contrast, of the nine Americans with Ryder Cup experience, only Patrick Reed (a star in 2016), Jordan Spieth, Brooks Koepka, and Dustin Johnson have winning records. Phil Mickelson has won 18 matches, but has lost 20, and Tiger Woods has won 13 and lost 17.
However, with 11 of the 12 Americans rated in the top 17 – only Mickelson (25) has a higher ranking – they are favored by most books in 2018 Ryder Cup odds.
Past Ryder Cups suggest the Europeans will be more than competitive, and given that their team includes in-form players like Rose, Molinari, McIlroy, Jon Rahm, and Tommy Fleetwood, they will be a formidable opponent. The 2018 Ryder Cup odds of +115 to win are very good.
If you were looking at the points differential, Europe looks to be the best bet: at +1.5 points you can get Europe at odds of -140.
Matchups won’t be confirmed until the days they are played, but odds are available on who will be the leading overall points scorer. Woods will be favored by many punters, but the odds of around +1200 look too short given his Ryder Cup record. Johnson (+800) is the favorite, but Rose (+900), McIlroy (+900), Koepka (+1000), Rahm (+1400), and Reed (+1600) look to be better prospects.
There’s a huge variety of other bets available, including the overall winning margin, the largest winning margin of any individual match, which team will be ahead on each of the three days, and so on. If you enjoy team golf, there’s a lot of fun to be had in the 2018 Ryder Cup odds markets.
PREDICTIONS: Europe at +1.5 points margin (-140); Justin Rose (+900) and Brooks Koepka (+1000) as the leading player overall; Europe to win day one foursomes (+160).