Harrington, who will lead Europe at Whistling Straits in two years' time, says McIlroy will be fully behind Europe's efforts to successfully defend the trophy he helped win in France last year.
And after Thomas Bjorn led Europe to victory last October those on the winning the European Team, including Rory Mcllroy and Justin Rose, have been out-spoken in declaring they want "continuation" in the naming of the 2020 European Captain.
He said: "I felt it was the right time for me to go for it". But just because it seems like my turn, it's something I thought long and hard about.
"The thing I remember was going out to play a round of golf at the first and Padraig would be on the putting green practising".
"I want to hopefully leave the European Tour and Ryder Cup in a better place after two years".
"It's close on 18 months to go, it really is a full-time job, the Ryder Cup, trying to get everything in preparation", Harrington added.
Harrington played in the biennial event in six consecutive contests, including winningm teams in 2002, 2004, 2006 and 2010.
Harrington was chosen as Europe's 2020 Ryder Cup captain by a five-man selection panel comprising the three most recent European Ryder Cup Captains - Bjørn, Clarke and McGinley - as well as the Chief Executive of the European Tour, Keith Pelley, and European Tour Tournament Committee representative Edoardo Molinari.
"The players want continuity, it makes my job easier that I have their confidence, they've spoken to me publicly and privately". We've had some great captains and I've learnt from all of them.
"I have to understand that it's very black and white".
"And secondly the course is a European-style of course, it's windy and has a links-feel to it".
"But I also played under Bernhard Langer, who was like a school teacher. You just have to know the man behind the scenes".
"I know we're going to a new venue". I'm sure there's going to be a certain edge to it but look it's a big strong golf course and we should all know what we are getting. I think Padraig will be blessed with an even better team. The likes of him, Westwood, Ian Poulter and Sergio Garcia are pretty much nailed on to take on the role at some point, and the timing is good to have the Irishman as Ryder Cup captain.
However, Bookmakers have been quick to make United States of America favourites - although they are yet to confirm their skipper with the likes of Steve Stricker and Fred Couples in contention.
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