Belfast Telegraph

Friday 22 August 2014

Brazil plummet to new low of 22nd in Fifa world rankings

Brazil's Neymar (left) battles England's Theo Walcott at the Maracana Stadium
Brazil's Neymar (left) battles England's Theo Walcott at the Maracana Stadium

The latest Fifa world rankings see Brazil slip to an all-time low.

 

The hosts of the 2014 World Cup are now ranked 22nd, a fall of three places since the list was last published.

The five-time world champions are now sandwiched between Ghana and Mali and behind nations such as Bosnia-Herzegovina, Greece and Denmark.

Brazil's low position is a combination of their lacklustre recent results, including four draws in their last six games, and their lack of competitive internationals.

Brazil, who qualify automatically for next year's World Cup as hosts, have spent the last two years playing only friendlies, which earn fewer points under the complex calculation system.

Despite that, it will still come as an embarrassment for the football obsessed nation, particularly 12 months out from their hosting of football's greatest carnival.

England, who recently drew with Brazil and also failed to beat Republic of Ireland, also dropped places, slipping two positions to ninth.

The Republic slipped two places themselves and are now ranked 41.

Northern Ireland are ranked 116 - a rise of 3 places but still far below nations suck as Libya, Guatemala and Cape Verde Islands.

Mali were among four teams who reached their highest-ever ranking, alongside Belgium (12th), Bosnia-Herzegovina (15th) and Albania (38th).

There was no change in the top four with Germany, Argentina and Croatia trailing World and European champions Spain.

 

Top 10...

1. (1) Spain

2. (2) Germany

3. (3) Argentina

4. (4) Croatia

5. (9) Netherlands

6. (5) Portugal

7. (6) Colombia

8. (8) Italy

9. (7) England

10. (10) Ecuador

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