NIGERIA STILL NOT NUMBER ONE IN AFRICA

The February edition of the FIFA World Ranking is dominated by the CAF Africa Cup of Nations in South Africa. By claiming their third title, Nigeria (30th, up 22) have not only ended a 19-year drought since they last won the tournament, but have also climbed 22 places to 30th – their best ranking since August 2010 –while beaten finalists Burkina Faso (55th, up 37) have moved up a massive 37 places to 55th. Hosts South Africa (60th, up 25) have also enjoyed a significant leap of 25 places.

Although former Africa Cup of Nations winners Côte d’Ivoire (12th, up 2) bowed out at the quarter-final stage, last year’s runners-up have achieved their best-ever world ranking (12th). However, the Elephants have not made it into the top ten, where Spain (1st, unchanged) continue to reign supreme ahead of Germany (2nd, unchanged) and Argentina (3rd, unchanged). England (4th, up 2) complete the top four after their home win over Brazil.

The first matches of the latest round of CONCACAF qualifying matches for the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™ have resulted in improved rankings for nearly all of the teams involved, with Panama (42nd, up 4), Honduras (51st, up 8), Costa Rica (53rd, up 13) and Jamaica (56th, up 2) all making progress once again. Only the USA (32nd, down 4) have fallen in the ranking. Olympic champions Mexico remain in 15th place despite their goalless draw against Jamaica in the Aztec Stadium.

Venezuela (45th, up 10) have returned to the top 50, which now contains all ten CONMEBOL teams.

The next FIFA World Ranking will be published on 14 March 2013.

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