FIFA Rankings: England move up to third; Belgium stay atop
The England men's football team has moved up to third in the latest FIFA Rankings to claim their joint-highest position. This is the first time England have been in the top three since September 2012. Following their defeat in the Euro 2020 final, England beat Hungary and Andorra 4-0 in World Cup qualifying earlier this month and drew 1-1 against Poland. Here's more.
England have made rapid progress under Gareth Southgate, who has developed the team defensively. England are a strong bunch, hard to break down and with Harry Kane leading the attack, the side is never short of goals. When Southgate took over in 2016, England were ranked 16th. After a positive show at the European Championships, England will want to continue performing well.
Belgium top the show in terms of FIFA Rankings. They have 1,832.33 points. After losing in the quarters of the Euro 2020, Belgium were superb in their FIFA WC qualifying matches, bagging three successive wins. They beat Estonia, Czech Republic, and Belarus. Belgium are followed by Brazil at number two (1,811.73). Recently, they won the World Cup qualifying matches against Chile and Peru.
World champions France have dropped to fourth in the rankings after managing two draws and a win in the recent World Cup qualifying matches. France drew 1-1 against Bosnia and Herzegovina. They had a similar result against Ukraine, before beating Finland. Euro 2020 winners Italy too managed two draws and a win. By defeating Lithuania, Italy are unbeaten in 37 games across competitions (record).
The likes of Argentina, Portugal, Spain, Mexico, and Denmark complete the top 10 in the rankings. Meanwhile, Scotland have moved up four places to be 45th and are followed by Northern Ireland, who also rose four spots to be placed 47th in the world. Wales remain in 19th as Republic of Ireland have dropped to 50th.