Losers still haven't lost much
World champs Italy have soared to 2nd spot, while Brazil still top despite losing.india Updated: Jul 12, 2006 19:17 IST
World Cup winners Italy have soared 11 places to second in the latest FIFA rankings although 2002 champions Brazil held on to top spot despite losing in the quarter-finals in Germany.
The new format, which was used first time, to decide the rankings take into account performances over the last four years as against the earlier format of assessing eight years' showing. The previous method had attracted criticism indicating that its formula for calculation was too complicated.
Eyebrows were raised when teams like Czech Republic, the United States and Mexico were ranked higher than more established teams.
In the latest rankings, losing World Cup finalists France gained four spots to number four while Argentina, who impressed all with their fluent football before being ousted on penalties in the quarterfinals by Germany, gained six places to number three.
Hosts and third-placed Germany climbed 10 places to number nine while England, who reached the last eight gained five spots to number five.
Czech Republic, ranked second before the tournament, fell to number 10. Other major losers were the Netherlands (down three places to number six), Spain (down two places to number seven) and Portugal (down one place to number eight).
The USA, ranked fifth two months ago, fell to 16th and Mexico lost 14 places to 18th.
Paraguay and African newcomers Ivory Coast made it to the top 20. Ghana rose 23 places to 25th while Australia gained nine places to 33rd.
The Asian powerhouses fare dismally in the latest rankings with all the four nations playing the World Cup suffering steep falls.
Iran upstaged Japan as the top-ranked side in the continent even after dropping 24 spots to 47th. The East Asians lost 31 places to be ranked two notches lower.
South Korea fell 27 places to 56th while Saudi Arabia dropped 47 places to number 81. India, though, suffered a steep fall of 13 places in the latest FIFA rankings, the first to be released after the World Cup in Germany.
India, though, suffered a steep fall of 13 places in the latest FIFA rankings, the first to be released after the World Cup in Germany.
India, preparing for the Vancouver Whitecaps Nations Cup in Canada under new coach Englishman Bob Houghton, fell from 117th place to 130th in the new standings.
FIFA Top 10 Ranking (change of position in bracket)
1 Brazil (-)
2 Italy (+11)
3 Argentina (+6)
4 France (+4)
5 England (+5)
6 Netherlands (-3)
7 Spain (-2)
8 Portugal (-1)
9 Germany (+10)