Friday 6 December 2019

Management 'dream team' halts Irish rankings slide

Republic of Ireland manager Martin O'Neill and assistant Roy Keane
Republic of Ireland manager Martin O'Neill and assistant Roy Keane

The Republic of Ireland's slide down the FIFA world rankings has momentarily stalled.

Yesterday, they were still rated 70th in the world, one place behind Oman, five ahead of the Cape Verde Islands but behind the United Arab Emirates, Libya and Sierra Leone. With just one win in seven games since the managerial 'dream team' of Martin O'Neill and Roy Keane took charge, Ireland's decline as a footballing force has yet to be reversed.

European Championship opponents Germany have moved up a place to first in the rankings, following their World Cup triumph – the first time they have occupied that position in 20 years.

Scotland remain in 27th position with Poland nine places above Ireland in 61st place. England are ranked 20th, their lowest position for 18 years.

Germany replace Spain at the top while the previous holders drop down to eighth place.

Colombia move up to fourth. Brazil are down four places to seventh after their 7-1 humiliation by Germany, while the Netherlands move up 12 places to third behind Argentina.

Belgium are now fifth. England now trail behind Chile, Greece, Bosnia-Herzegovina and the United States. Perhaps most worryingly, Scotland are just seven places below them in 27th.

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