Nigeria leap up FIFA rankings
ZURICH (Reuters) – Nigeria leapt 22 places up the FIFA rankings on Thursday following their win at the African Nations Cup, but the continent remained without a team in the top 10.
The Super Eagles, who edged Burkina Faso 1-0 in Sunday’s final in South Africa to win the competition for the first time in 19 years, rose to 30th place in the table, their best position for three years.
Their opponents, who exceeded expectations by reaching the final, stayed outside the top 50 but have jumped 37 places to 55th.
Ivory Coast, beaten by Nigeria in the quarterfinals, remained Africa’s highest-ranked side in 12th, followed by Ghana seven places below.
Surprise package Cape Verde, who reached the quarterfinals on their debut, moved up 13 places to 63rd.
CONCACAF’s highest-ranked team were Mexico in 15th while the best Asia could muster was Japan, who are 28th.
Five-time World Cup winners and 2014 World Cup hosts Brazil remained in 18th spot, their lowest-ever ranking, after losing 2-1 to England in Luiz Felipe Scolari’s first game back as coach last week.
The win took England up two places to fourth.