Match three looked set to finish in record fashion when controversial wild card Sergio Garcia and rookie Alex Noren raced seven up on Phil Mickelson and Bryson DeChambeau after just nine holes, but the European pair eventually had to settle for a 5&4 success.
Paul Casey and Tyrrell Hatton followed with a 3&2 win over Dustin Johnson and Rickie Fowler.
But with 14½ points required to win back the trophy, European captain Thomas Bjorn knows his team now have a wonderful chance, with 16 points still to play for.
The U.S. still faces a daunting 10-6 deficit heading into Sunday singles, and the task ahead looks even more hard playing at Le Golf National outside Paris.
McIlroy and Thorbjorn Olesen had won just one hole in a 4&2 loss to Johnson and Fowler, while Rose and Jon Rahm twice enjoyed a two-shot lead over Brooks Koepka and Tony Finau in the opening match but eventually lost on the 18th.
But the world number five said that nothing, even winning at Carnoustie in July, could compare to winning four successive Ryder Cup matches.
Once again too many United States players were too loose off the tee and too aggressive with their approaches, captain Jim Furyk looking on in blank-faced disbelief as his team of star names and major winners failed to cope with the challenging but never vindictive course set-up.
As badly as Friday afternoon's Ryder Cup session went for the USA team, Saturday morning was worse.
There were still two matches out on the course and the Americans were far ahead in those two matches.
'They've been great at re-focusing between matches and getting back out there to deliver. And three holes later, Spieth and Thomas now lead by 2.
"They had a six-point lead, and now it's four", Spieth said.
In the second match out, Casey's birdie putt from 10 feet on the fourth had put Europe one up early. But Spieth and Thomas are clearly viewed as one of the best American teams and need to play like it in order to get the Americans back into the competition.
No, the European team didn't shut the US out as it did in the Friday afternoon foursomes (alternate shot).
The Northern Irishman complained about raucous US fans at the 2016 Ryder Cup, claiming they overstepped boundaries with comments in certain instances.
"Playing against a team like that, that's putting that well, you're going to have to make a lot of birdies and we didn't".
Europe will begin the singles as strong favourites, but their opponents will at least feel they have some momentum after responding to a stunning streak of eight points in succession for Thomas Bjorn's side across Friday and Saturday.