Saturday 21 July 2018

Venezuela deprive Ireland a top 50 place in world rankings as Wales move ahead of England

Martin O'Neill
Martin O'Neill

Declan Wholey

Venezuela have squeezed Martin O'Neill's Republic of Ireland just outside the top 50 in the latest Fifa world rankings.

The Boys in Green, who take on Gibraltar tomorrow night in the European qualifier in Faro drop a place to 51 in the world.

Venezuela move up two places, with Egypt, Peru and Turkey just inside the top 50. Ireland are currently just ahead of 1998 World Cup finalists Jamaica, Nigeria and Trinidad and Tobago.

According to the world governing body, Wales are now a better footballing nation than England.

Chris Coleman's side occupy ninth place in the Fifa list and lie one above England, who have swapped places with Chile since August's lists was announced.

Read more: Keane: We haven't earned the right to be complacent against Gibraltar

Wales were in ninth place then, their highest ever position since the Fifa rankings were introduced in 1992, but this is the first time they have ever appeared above England, or as the highest-ranked home nation.

Argentina continue to lead the way ahead of Belgium and world champions Germany, with Colombia and Brazil completing the top five.

Scotland are up a place (31), while Northern Ireland slip one place to 41.

Read more: Ireland will not be taking Gibraltar lightly, vows Quinn

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