Tommy Fleetwood receives Pep Guardiola backing ahead of Ryder Cup

25 September 2018, 08:58 | Updated: 25 September 2018, 09:11

Tommy Fleetwood has revealed he has received a message of support from Pep Guardiola ahead of his debut in the Ryder Cup this week.

Fleetwood has struck up a friendship with golf-mad Manchester City manager Guardiola and was playing golf with the Spaniard when City's title win was confirmed last season.

Guardiola was at the 2012 Ryder Cup when Europe claimed their famous victory at Medinah, but Fleetwood is unsure whether he will make it over to Paris on Sunday, with City in Premier League action at home to Brighton on Saturday afternoon.

"We all have these motivational videos and he is one who sent a message to me," said Fleetwood.

"I'm not sure he is coming over as he's busy at the weekend. We talk quite a lot and he is someone who is great to know.

"He was at the Ryder Cup in Medinah and he will always mention that was one of the greatest times he had in his life.

"It has a special place in his heart and he has been very supportive over the whole thing."

Fleetwood is one of five rookies in the European side but has already experienced victory at Le Golf National, winning the Open de France on the course in 2016.

Fellow newcomer Tyrrell Hatton is the only player in the team not to have a top-10 finish at the venue and Fleetwood believes they have to make the most of that knowledge.

"It's difficult to say how much of an advantage it will be. It can't do any harm we've played the course many times and know it better," he said.

"I played the French Open four times and didn't do any good and on the fifth time I won.

"So knowledge can only be a good thing, but whether it will make a massive difference; maybe it's a little advantage, but it's the best players in the world that are out here, so it's not something to look at too much."

Ian Poulter has described the first tee shot at a Ryder Cup as the most nerve-wracking shot in golf, but Fleetwood is looking forward to getting underway on Friday.

He said: "The No 1 thing I've pictured since the Ryder Cup kind of became a goal is that first tee shot. That's been front and centre in my mind, and when I've thought about the Ryder Cup, the Ryder Cup in Paris, especially, I've thought about that first tee shot standing on that first tee and being a Ryder Cup member and playing for that team and hitting that tee shot and what that's going to be like.

"I've thought about it plenty, but again, nothing prepares you for the real thing. The grandstand is pretty big. There's no denying that.

"Looking forward to it. It's something that everybody wants in their career, so as nerve-wracking as it is, and whatever those feelings are, everybody wants that in their life. So you have to just take it on and let it all happen."

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