Tuesday 23 April 2019

England climb to fourth in FIFA world rankings

Wins over the Czech Republic and Montenegro helped Southgate’s men climb.

Gareth Southgate has seen his England team climb to fourth place in FIFA’s latest world rankings (Nick Potts/PA)
Gareth Southgate has seen his England team climb to fourth place in FIFA’s latest world rankings (Nick Potts/PA)

By Damian Spellman, Press Association Sport

England have climbed one place to fourth in FIFA’s latest world rankings after their crushing Euro 2020 qualifying victories over the Czech Republic and Montenegro.

Gareth Southgate’s men are headed only by Belgium, France and Brazil after leapfrogging Croatia, the side who ended their World Cup dream at the semi-final stage in Russia last summer.

England opened their Group A campaign with a 5-0 rout of the Czechs at Wembley before coming from behind to win 5-1 in Podgorica last month as their rich vein of form continued.

Euro 2016 semi-finalists Wales remain in 19th place following their 1-0 home win over Slovakia.

Mick McCarthy’s Republic of Ireland return to the top 30 following a five-place improvement as a result of back-to-back qualifying victories over Gibraltar and Georgia in the new manager’s first games back at the helm.

They are tied in 29th place with Serbia and Venezuela, who beat 11th-placed Argentina 3-1 during the last international break.

Michael O’Neill’s Northern Ireland sit in 33rd (Niall Carson/PA)

Northern Ireland, who top Group C following home wins against Estonia and Belarus, sit in 33rd following a leap of three positions.

However, Scotland slipped four places to 44th, immediately behind Australia, Nigeria and Greece, after their 3-0 humbling in Kazakhstan and a 2-0 win in San Marino.

Israel made up the most ground in the top 100, rising eight places to 84th in part as a result of their 4-2 qualifying win against Austria, who drop 11 to 34th.

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