FIFA Rankings: Belgium retain top spot ahead of Argentina and Spain, India move up
Palestine moved up 21 places - the highest rise last month
Although the top 20 teams are yet to play a game in the new year, the latest FIFA rankings have seen a change after teams lower down the table climbed up the rankings. At the top, Belgium still hold the no.1 spot, closely followed by Argentina and Spain.
In the top 20, the only new changes are Hungary and Turkey. Hungary managed to move up to 19th while Turkey sneaked into the top 20 after Ivory Coast fell nine places, due in part to a shock upset at the hands of Rwanda who moved up to 85. 19th spot is also Hungary’s highest ever ranking since the new system came into being in 1993.
European teams now constitute more than 60% of the top 50 countries. 31 countries belonging to UEFA now make up the top 50 after Scotland (46) and Norway (50) managed to climb up the rankings at the expense of African teams Congo and Guinea. There are still 8 CONMEBOL nations (South America) and 4 CONCACAF teams (North & Central America) in the top 50.
The only Asian team from the AFC in the top 50 is Iran. They, too, fell one position to 44. But the biggest rise in the table saw three Asian teams involved. Palestine moved up an astonishing 21 places to 110 while Saudi Arabia moved up 20 places to 55. North Korea also moved up 18 spots to get into the top 100 (95).
Meanwhile, Libya saw the biggest fall after they dropped out of the top 100. They fell 24 spots to finish January in 105th position.
India also moved up one spot to 162. They had previously moved up three spots in December for their performances in the SAFF Cup and beat Afghanistan 2-1 in the final on 3 January. The next world rankings will be released in the first week of March.