Ryder Victors Ugly Americans?

The Daily Mirror headline summed up the British response to the U.S. victory over Europe in the Ryder Cup: "United Slobs of America."

The U.S. team might have thought it had cause to celebrate its dramatic come-from-behind triumph over the Europeans. But what you thought about this tournament depended on where you watched it, reports CBS News Correspondent Mark Phillips.

Monday's newspapers were scathing in their criticism of the American celebrations on the 17th green after Justin Leonard holed the 45-foot putt that capped the greatest comeback in Cup history.

    "Disgusting," blared the Sun.

    "Disgraceful," said the Daily Mail.

Columnists said the U.S. victory -- 14 1/2 to 13 1/2 after trailing 10-6 entering Sunday's singles -- was tainted by jingoism and poor sportsmanship. Their behavior during the three-day competition at The Country Club in Brookline, Mass., was compared to that of soccer hooligans.

"American players and their fans belong in the gutter," the Sun said.

"Let us be painfully honest about it," columnist Matthew Norman wrote in the London Evening Standard. "Yes, they are repulsive people, charmless, rude, cocky, mercenary, humorless, ugly, full of nauseatingly fake religiosity, and as odious in victory as they are unsporting in defeat."

"The only good thing to be said in favor of the American golfers, in fact, is that, at golf if at nothing else, they are better than the Europeans," he wrote.

The problem wasn't the putt that won it. The problem was what happened next: The entire US team, along with wives and caddies, celebrating all over the 17th green.

But Jose Maria Olazabal, the European player, still had to putt. All the Americans jumping around didn't do much for the green or his concentration.

"I think that kind of behavior is not the one everybody expects." Olazabal said.

British papers cited other examples of "appalling" behavior: a fan shouting at the top of Olazabal's backswing during his approach shot to the 17th green; fans repeatedly taunting Colin Montgomerie; and spectators sending rookie Andrew Coltart in the wrong direction to hunt for a lost ball.

Sam Torrance, Europe's vice captain, called it "the most disgusting thing I've ever seen," and accused American player Tom Lehman in particular of improper behavior.

U.S. captain Ben Crenshaw apoloized. "It really was not something that we need to be proud of," he said. "For that, we're truly sorry."

CBS Worldwide Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report