Belfast Telegraph

Reports: Northern Ireland to reach highest ever world ranking place

Northern Ireland will move up to 22nd in the FIFA World Rankings - their highest EVER place - when the new list is published on Thursday, according to reports.

Michael O'Neill's men are currently 28th in the list but ESPN have said that they will move up six spots to top their previous highest ranking of 26th, which they reached in April.

If ESPN have got their sums right, it will pitch NI 10 places higher than the Netherlands, who will be at their lowest ever ebb in terms of the official list.

To put it all in perspective, 22nd place is 107 spots above the lowly 129th that Northern Ireland occupied in September 2012, just seven months after O'Neill officially took charge.

And should their current good form take them into the World Cup finals for the first time since 1986, perhaps a place inside the top 20 isn't even beyond the current crop of Northern Irish football stars. Safe to say the Twitter public are absolutely delighted with the news:

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