Nigeria Drops In FIFA Rankings
The inability of the Super Eagles of Nigeria to progress beyond the group stage of the just concluded Brazil 2013 Confederations Cup have had an adverse effect on the team’s ranking as they dropped four places in the monthly FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking released Thursday from FIFA’s headquarters, Zurich, Switzerland.
The African champions who were ranked 31st in May could only record a 6-1 victory over lowly rated Tahiti at the Confederations Cup now occupy the 35th position on the latest ranking released for the month of June.
According to the ranking released by FIFA, Nigeria are now the fifth best African country in the world with 723 points.
Cote d’Ivoire still maintain their lead in the continent with a total of 1009 points and are ranked 13th in the world.
Ghana, who are second on the African continent, are now ranked 24th in the world ranking after dropping three spots. While Mali and Algeria who are 3rd and 4th in Africa are now occupying the 28th and 34th positions in the world respectively.
Spain are still the number one team in the global ranking despite their defeat against Brazil in the Confederations Cup final on 30 June.
Brazil’s stunning victory over Spain in the FIFA Confederations Cup Final has helped reap them another reward: a 13-place leap to ninth on the July edition of the FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking. Luiz Felipe Scolari’s side won all five of their matches at that competition, and defeated France in a preparatory friendly, to collect an unrivalled 223 points over the past month.
Spain nevertheless held on to pole position ahead of Germany, while Colombia climbed four places to a personal best of third thanks to some impressive performances in FIFA World Cup qualifying. Meanwhile Belgium (10th, up 2) celebrated entering the top ten for the first time in history.
Participating in the FIFA Confederations Cup paid off for two other semi-finalists, as Uruguay (12th, up 7) and Italy (6th, up 2) gained ground, although the other competing teams – Mexico (20th, down 3), Nigeria (35th, down 4), Japan (37th, down 5) and Tahiti (154th, down 16) – have all fallen back.
The ongoing Brazil 2014 qualifiers and a number of friendlies have seen no fewer than seven teams rise more than 20 places, namely Cape Verde Islands (49th, up 23), Scotland (50th, up 24), Austria (54th, up 22), Guinea (61st, up 24), Armenia (66th, up 23), Senegal (74th, up 25) and Malta (133rd, up 23).
The next FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking will be published on 8 August 2013.