Mickelson snubbed as desperate US seek to stem European charge

The USA was set to begin the final foursomes session of the 2018 Ryder Cup at least four points behind and Phil Mickelson was left out.

Phil Mickelson at the 2018 Ryder Cup   -  Getty Images

Phil Mickelson was unsurprisingly left out for the Saturday foursomes at the Ryder Cup as Jim Furyk turned to two new partnerships in a bid to keep the United States' dwindling Ryder Cup hopes alive.

After winning the first three points of this year's contest before being pegged back to 3-1, the USA suffered a humiliating whitewash in Friday's alternate-shot matches to trail 5-3 overnight.

And, Europe's lead was up to 8-3 by the time the next foursomes pairings were named, as the host recorded wins in each of the first three fourball clashes on Saturday.

Although Jordan Spieth and Justin Thomas held a slender lead over Ian Poulter and Jon Rahm with two holes to play, the USA was set to begin the afternoon session with a mountain to climb in order to retain the trophy.

READ: Team Europe continues Ryder Cup charge

Seeking to turn the tide, Furyk paired Dustin Johnson with Brooks Koepka and opted to put Tiger Woods - a loser in each of his matches so far this week - with Bryson DeChambeau, the man who partnered Mickelson in a heavy defeat to Sergio Garcia and Alex Noren on Friday.

The remaining US partnerships were familiar ones, Thomas and Spieth staying together and Bubba Watson again playing with Webb Simpson.

Europe predictably stuck with the same eight players who recorded convincing wins in Friday's foursomes. Henrik Stenson and Justin Rose were drawn to face Johnson and Koepka, with Garcia and Noren taking on Watson and Simpson.

Tommy Fleetwood and Francesco Molinari were given the chance to claim their fourth win from as many matches - and third against Woods - while Ian Poulter and Rory McIlroy reunited for a contest with Spieth and Thomas.