Ryder Cup 2020 captain Padraig Harrington has spoken candidly to Off The Ball about his role, including why he wants Rory McIlroy to play an integral part in his Europe team.
Speaking to Joe Molloy, Harrington went into great depth about how the media turned him 'white' after his unveiling, how he is suited to captaining an 'away' Cup team and how the role came about from a pact taken with previous captain Thomas Bjorn.
But it was Rory McIlroy's role in the team that animated Harrington, revealing how he has already been in touch with the Northern Irishman about the tournament and his position.
"Yes, [I have spoken to him] by text. I will talk to him through the winter, too.
"Look, Rory has said one or two things, but [...] he loves the Ryder Cup. He loves the European Tour.
"The Ryder Cup gives back to all the players something that no other event gives back. They get to go out there and get an opportunity to be heroes, to be loved.
"Rory gets a chance to be a leader. He really has done a good job in the team room of being a leader, and players look up to him. You can't get that anywhere else.
"This is the sort of stuff that you and your vice-captain are watching; you are seeing his interaction on the golf course. He cannot get that buzz anywhere else.
"When you are playing as a team and the crowd are up, you're getting the cheers and you're holing putts [...] he's not going to get an experience like that anywhere."
Rory will be taking a break from European Tour duty, but Off The Ball will keep on top of the action over the coming months!