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Brazil close in on Argentina as race for Team of Year heats up

Brazil close in on Argentina as race for Team of Year heats up

Posted by PanamericanWorld on November 24, 2016

There has been plenty of movement in the latest edition of the FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking thanks largely to the 63 FIFA World Cup Russia™ qualification matches played, but also to 71 other qualifiers and international friendlies that took place over the past few weeks. 

Argentina remain top for November, but have seen their command on the summit weakened by close rivals Brazil (2, up 1). After a good run of form in FIFA World Cup™ qualifying, A Seleção have surpassed Germany (3, down 1) and closed the distance to their South American neighbours, as the year-end approaches. Chile, meanwhile, climbed into fourth place. 

Republic of Ireland (23, up 10) jumped ten places to break into the Top 25 this month after winning three successive World Cup qualifiers. Egypt saw off Ghana in one of Africa’s headline World Cup qualifiers to move up ten places themselves into 36th position. Further down the table, Burkina Faso (50, up 17), Nigeria (50, up ten) and Slovenia (50, up 2) all managed to squeeze into joint 50th place after impressive results on the road to Russia. 

Biggest movers

Outside the Top 50, five teams made the strongest impact. Israel (54, up 25) secured the biggest moved by points (145), as they continue their push for a World Cup qualification seat in a group that includes Spain and Italy. Armenia’s 3-2 win against Montenegro helped them jump the largest number of places this month (87, up 38), while Namibia (98, up 20), Cyprus (116, up 23), and Tahiti (149, up 23) also made significant strides up the standings. In addition, three sides reached their highest ever FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking this month: Guinea-Bissau (68, up 1), Curaçao (75, up 2), and Comoros (139, up 4). The December ranking will be the final ranking for 2016 and will reveal the winners for the Team of the Year (awarded to the team in first place by year’s end) and Mover of the Year (awarded to the team that has won the most points over the course of the year).

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