Afghans in their best-ever position in FIFA-rankings
KABUL (PAN): Afghanistan, who have defeated Sri Lanka and Mongolia as well as a draw against Laos in the Football Confederation (AFC) Challenge Cup qualifiers, jumped 24 places and are ranked 143 in the latest FIFA rankings released Thursday, an official said.
The Afghans are now in their best-ever position and have qualified for the AFC Challenge Cup 2014 together with Palestine (150th, up 3) and Myanmar (155th, up 9), Afghanistan Football Federation's youth wing official, Ali Kazmi, told Pajhwok Afghan News.
A total of 18 ‘A’ international matches have been taken into account for the March edition of the FIFA World Ranking. Virtually all of the games in recent weeks have been played in the AFC, with 15 of the 18 games being AFC Challenge Cup qualifiers. This takes the total number of ‘A’ international matches played in 2013 so far to 155.
Kazmi said the latest rankings showed Afghanistan jumped to 21th in Asia and first in South Asia. He said Afghanistan moved forward from their previous 161th position to 143 on the back of their two victories in the 2012 Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Challenge Cup qualifiers.
The latest rankings shows Spain continues to hold a comfortable lead at the top over Germany and Argentina.
However, Colombia have assumed outright sixth place on the global ladder - a position they shared with Portugal, who drop down a slot.
Ivory Coast remain Africa's top-ranked team as they dropped one place to No.13. Japan rose two spots to No.26 and are the leaders among the Asian teams.
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