Rory McIlroy believes he must go out and prove that he is the future of golf by winning a major championship.
Two-time US Open champion Ernie Els has tipped the Holywood star to become world No 1 and a multiple major winner. But McIlroy refuses to believe the hype and insists that he must do his talking with his clubs.
He said: “I’ve learnt over the past few months, you can’t take a lot of notice of what other people say.
“There is no point in people saying that you are going to be a major champion when you are not one.
“It is very flattering but I need to go out and do it first. I need to go out and play the golf that everyone thinks I am capable of playing.
“I have to do it for four days and maybe if I am sitting here with the trophy here on Sunday night, then yes, I can say that I can become a multiple major champion.”
Els is tipping McIlroy to bounce back from his final round Masters disaster and dominate the game.
The Big Easy, 41, believes it’s only a matter of time before the Holywood star breaks through in a grand slam event
Having blown several majors himself, the South African understood perfectly what McIlroy went through at Augusta.
Els said: “Rory’s got all the talent in the world. He’s a future No. 1 without a doubt.
“First time I ever saw him, I thought, he’s incredible. And he is incredible. And he’s still learning.
“When he breaks through, he can just open the flood gates, but he’s just got to break through.
“He obviously had an opportunity there, and hopefully he’s learned from it and he didn’t get too despondent about screwing up on that 10th hole.
“But if he keeps learning and keeps going, keeps his head up, boy, I think he’s going to win a lot of majors, but obviously he has to win the first to win a lot.”
“He’s 22 years old. He’s not perfect. Nobody is perfect.”
McIlroy reckons he can contend at Congressional this week thanks to a “fair” set up by US Open organisers.
He said: “They haven’t set up like typical US Open. They shaved the roughdown around some bunkers and greens. It gives you a chance to hit a few shots.
“They have intro a few run offs and a bit of variety, which I think is great. You feel as if you can make some birdies out there.
“You can see yourself shooting something in the 60s out here. I reckon a couple of shots under par might win this week.”