15 September 2016
Nigeria have moved up three places in the latest edition of the monthly FIFA rankings released on Thursday.
In the ranking published on FIFA’s website, Nigeria’s Super Eagles garnered 534 points as against 513 it had in August when it was placed 67th.
The slight movement up the ladder comes on the heels of points gained from the AFCON 2017 qualifiers win over Tanzania during the period in review.
The Super Eagles also moved up two places to 14th spot in Africa.
Reigning Africa Cup of Nations champions, Cote d’Ivoire, are Africa’s highest ranked team in the world moving up two places from 36th to 34th while remaining number one in Africa.
Super Eagles 2018 World Cup qualifying foes, Algeria, dropped three places from 32nd to 35th in the world and now rank number two on the continent.
Zambia, Nigeria’s opponents in the World Cup qualifiers in October, fell by one spot to 92 in the world.
Cameroon, another country facing Nigeria in the World Cup qualifiers, dropped five places to 59th in the world.
In spite of the shifts in the ranking, Argentina and Belgium maintained first and second place respectively, cementing their positions at the summit of the world ranking for another month.
In a major twist, Euro 2016 semifinalist, Wales, moved up to 10th on the FIFA rankings, their highest placing for over a year, following their 4 – 0 win over Moldova earlier this month.
Brazil were the biggest movers in the top 10, rising from ninth to fourth, their highest ranking before they hosted the 2014 World Cup.
The Selecao made a winning start to life under new manager Tito as they cruised to a rare win away in Ecuador and a 2 – 1 win over Colombia to re-energise their qualifying campaign.
Uruguay also entered the top 10, with Italy dropping out to 13th.
England climbed over the Italians into 12th after Adam Lallana scored a late winner over Slovakia to give Sam Allardyce victory in his first game in charge.
A total of 126 international A-matches were played over the past few weeks, bringing the total number of games so far in 2016 to 632.
The next FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking will be published on October 20. Hopefully Nigeria will gather enough points to move even further up.
Author: Timilehin Boyinde
Oluwatimilehin Boyinde is a research writer and a social media strategist. A public affairs analyst, he writes about history, politics, sports, life matters and technology. He is passionate about happenings in Local and international political arenas. He is an avid Manchester United fan and an unapologetic Nigerian.