FIFA World Ranking: Brazil overtakes Belgium to top the lead in Men’s Ranking

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FIFA World Ranking: Brazil presently leads the men’s FIFA World Rating, which is a ranking system for men’s national teams in association football.

FIFA World Ranking: Brazil overtakes Belgium to top the lead in Men's Ranking

The men’s member nations of FIFA, the world governing body of football, rank their teams based on their game results, with the most successful teams rated first.

Since the rankings’ inception in December 1992, eight teams (Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, and Spain) have held the top spot, with Brazil holding the position for the most time.

The outcomes of all FIFA-recognised full international matches are utilized to award points.

The ranking system has been updated multiple times in response to concerns that the previous method of calculation did not accurately reflect the relative strengths of the national teams.

The current version of the ranking system has employed the Elo rating system used in chess and Go since August 16, 2018.

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Coca-Cola is the current sponsor of the rating, hence it is referred to as the FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking. Coca-Cola is also a sponsor of the women’s version.

History

FIFA produced the inaugural ranking of its men’s member associations in December 1992 to offer a framework for comparing the relative strengths of these teams.

This list was updated more frequently starting in August of the next year, and it was published every month after that. As a result of system critiques, significant improvements were implemented in January 1999 and again in July 2006.

FIFA World Ranking: Brazil overtakes Belgium to top the lead in Men's Ranking

Because the current technique has not been applied retrospectively to rankings before July 2006, historical recordings of the rankings, such as those seen on FIFA.com, represent the method of calculation in use at the time.

Since the rankings began, FIFA’s membership has grown from 167 to 211, with 210 members currently included in the rankings.

The Cook Islands are the only FIFA member association without a rating, having been dropped from the list in September 2019 after failing to play any matches in the preceding four years.

Changes in 2021

Instead of being rounded to the nearest integer, the teams’ points are now rounded to two decimal points starting with the April 2021 rankings.

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Uses of the rankings

FIFA uses the rankings to rate the progress and existing capabilities of its member nations’ national football teams, claiming that they provide “a valid metric for comparing national A-teams.”

They are used to seed tournaments as part of the calculation or as the complete grounds. The rankings were used to seed the groups in the 2010 FIFA World Cup qualification tournaments involving CONCACAF nations (using the May rankings), CAF (using the July set of data), and UEFA (using the particularly postponed November 2007 ranking places).

The following are the current standings:

RKTeamTotal PointsPrevious Points+/-
1BrazilBrazil1832.691823.429.27
2BelgiumBelgium18271828.45-1.45
3FranceFrance1789.851786.153.70
4ArgentinaArgentina1765.131766.99-1.86
5EnglandEngland1761.711755.526.19
6ItalyItaly1723.311740.77-17.46
7SpainSpain1709.191704.754.44
8PortugalPortugal1674.781660.2514.53
9MexicoMexico1658.821647.910.92
10NetherlandsNetherlands1658.661653.734.93

Brazil (1st, +1), which had previously spent the most time at the top of the FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking (4,731 days), returned to the top in March 2022, five years after they had last been there.

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A Seleçao’s recent victories in the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022TM qualifiers over Chile (4-0 at home) and Bolivia (4-0 away) allowed them to leapfrog Belgium, who had been in first place for the previous three years but had drawn 2-2 with Republic of Ireland on March 26 in a friendly.

The March 2022 table is thus a new chapter in rankings history, but it will also be used to determine the seeding for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Final Draw, which will be held on Friday, April 1st.

  • Pot 1: Qatar (host nation), Brazil, Belgium, France, Argentina, England, Spain, Portugal
  • Pot 2: Mexico, Netherlands, Denmark, Germany, Uruguay, Switzerland, USA, Croatia
  • Pot 3: Senegal, IR Iran, Japan, Morocco, Serbia, Poland, Korea Republic, Tunisia
  • Pot 4: Cameroon, Canada, Ecuador, Saudi Arabia, Ghana, winner of intercontinental play-off 1, winner of intercontinental play-off 2, winner of European play-off
FIFA World Ranking: Brazil overtakes Belgium to top the lead in Men's Ranking

Belgium (2nd, -1) are now on the second step of the podium, ahead of France (3rd) who remain unchanged. Behind this top three, Argentina (4th), England (5th), Spain (7th) and Portugal (8th) are the next best placed teams with regard to the Draw, keeping in mind that Italy (6th) will be absent following their defeat in the play-off semi-final.

Mexico (9th, +3) and Uruguay (13th, +3) are the biggest movers inside the top 20, while overall, it is Costa Rica (31st, +11) and then New Zealand (101st, +10) who have made the most progress. Also of note is the fact that Kosovo (107th, +2) have achieved their highest ever ranking to date.

LeaderBrazil
Moves into top 10Mexico (9, plus 3)
Moves out of top 10Denmark (11, minus 2)
Matches played in total162
Most matches playedNew Zealand (5)
Biggest move by pointsNew Zealand (44, 41 points)
Biggest move by placesCosta Rica (plus 11 places)
Biggest drop by pointsNew Caledonia (minus 35, 42 points)
Biggest drop by placesAzerbaijan and Somalia (minus 8 places)
Newly ranked teamsCook Islands
Teams that are no longer ranked
Inactive teams that are no longer rankedNone

*The next FIFA/Coca-Cola World ranking will be published on 23 June 2022.

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