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Phil Mickelson questions USA approach to Ryder Cup

Phil Mickelson claims that the USA have strayed from a winning formula since Paul Azinger captained the team to Ryder Cup success in 2008.

Phil Mickelson reacted to USA's defeat in the Ryder Cup on Sunday by questioning the approach of Tom Watson and his predecessors.

The Americans have not tasted success against Europe since Paul Azinger captained the side in 2008, and Mickelson believes that the team should be attempting to follow the example set by that victorious group in Valhalla.

"There were two things that allowed us to play our best that Paul Azinger did: one was he got everybody invested in the process," Mickelson told reporters. "He got everybody invested in who they were going to play with, who the picks were going to be, who was going to be in their pod, when they would play, and they had a great leader for each pod.

"The other thing that Paul did really well was he had a great game plan for us; how we were going to go about doing this, how we were going to go about playing together, if so-and-so is playing well, if so-and-so is not playing well - we had a real game plan.

"Unfortunately we have strayed from a winning formula in 2008 for the last three Ryder Cups and we need to consider maybe getting back to that formula that helped us play our best."

When asked if his statement was a direct criticism of Watson's tactics, Mickelson responded: "Oh, I'm sorry you're taking it that way. I'm just talking about what Paul Azinger did to help us play our best. You asked me what I thought we should do to bring our best golf out, and I'd go back to when we played our best golf and try to replicate that formula."

Mickelson has finished just two of his 10 Ryder Cups on the winning sides.

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Graeme McDowell of Europe celebrates victory on the 17th hole during the Singles Matches of the 2014 Ryder Cup at Gleneagles on September 28, 2014
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