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Northern Ireland climb to 42nd

Northern Ireland have climbed one place to 42nd in the latest FIFA world rankings, with the Republic of Ireland moving up four to 62nd.

Kyle Lafferty scored a brilliant brace in Northern Ireland's 2-1 win over Finland in their Euro 2016 qualifier at the end of March. Michael O'Neill's men are riding high with four wins from five in Group F.

The Republic of Ireland kept their qualification hopes alive with a 1-1 draw against Group D leaders Poland, Shane Long scoring a dramatic late equaliser.

Wales, meanwhile, have reached their highest ever position by climbing 15 places to 22nd.

Chris Coleman's side were the biggest movers - 153 points - in the April rankings after beating Israel 3-0 in their qualifier in Haifa and have surpassed the 27th spot achieved by Terry Yorath's side back in 1993.

England have climbed three places to 14th, while Scotland are up 10 spots to 29th.

Germany still lead the way from Argentina but Belgium have moved into the top three for the first time above Colombia with Brazil fifth and Holland sixth.


From Belfast Telegraph