U.S. Men's National Team

USA up to 33 in FIFA rankings

USA (Getty Images)

The U.S. men's national team's victory over Mexico at Estadio Azteca in last month's friendly was touted as one that closed the gap between the two nations. At the very least, that is most definitely true in terms of FIFA rankings. 

The United States' win was good for a three-place boost in the FIFA rankings, and it cost Mexico three places as well, as the Americans are up to 33rd in the world, while El Tri is down from 18th to 21st.

As for some of the United States' upcoming opponents, Jamaica is up six places to 60th overall and is the fourth-highest ranked team in CONCACAF, sitting 10 places behind Panama. October opponents Guatemala and Antigua and Barbuda are ranked 91st and 101st, respectively.

There was little movement in the top 10, Portugal and Uruguay swapped 4th and 5th, and the two sit behind top-ranked Spain, Germany and England, respectively. As for Bob Bradley's Egypt, the Pharaoahs jumped a couple of places to 38th and are sixth-highest among African sides.

What do you think of the latest rankings?

Share your thoughts below. 

  • alex

    well… as usual the rankings make absolutely no sense. So at least you can say they are consistent.


  • BamaMan

    FIFA rankings are garbage. England number #3 in the world? Give me a break. I much prefer ELO.


  • Ryan Nanez

    haha yeah i remember going in to the 2006 world cup we were ranked like 5th or 6th in the world


  • BSB

    That’s funny, since England is currently ranked #4 in the world by ELO. The most accurate rankings, I think, are the SPI rankings by Nate Silver, though it is easy to quibble with these too (England is #6 on SPI, by the way). There are a lot of problems with any ranking system, and FIFA’s is seriously flawed in a lot of important ways — more seriously than most other ranking systems. But, putting England in the top 10 is not among its biggest problems. England has a good recent record of results — undefeated in qualifying for the Euros, nearly perfect for World Cup qualifying before that, recent friendly victories against Italy, Norway, Sweden, Belgium, and even Spain; for as weak as they looked in Euro 2012, their results don’t look as bad as their play often did (tie vs. France, wins over Sweden and Ukraine, tie vs. Italy). England has a nice body of results, though they tend to fail spectacularly (like against Germany in the world cup) and this is what people remember. Are they the third toughest opponent in the world? I think not. Are they top 10? Absolutely, if you add up their results instead of just subjectively observing them (e.g. even in the friendly victory over Spain, Spain looked like far the better team; but it still counts as a win over the world’s top team when you add up their points).

    The European teams are on a bit of a high right now because they just had the Euros and other confederations are just getting started on the world cup qualifiers (i.e. the games that count more in the rankings), but can Portugal (4), Italy (6), Netherlands (8), Croatia (9), or Denmark(10) really make that strong a case to be above England among European teams?


  • Eurosnob

    There’s no way England is a top ten team in the world! They finished behind Bob Bradley’s team in the last World Cup! And then they lost 1-4 to Germany! Narrowly beating Ukraine and Sweeden against the run of play in the Euro does not qualify a team to be in top ten! During the Euro, England could not string three passes together and had less possession than all four of its opponents. They were technically inferior to a young Ukrainian team and that says it all. And don’t forget that England benefited from the biggest screw up by the refs, who did not see that the ball crossed the goal line by about two feet before being cleared by John Terry. As for England’s performances in their Euro qualifying group, they were unable to beat Montenegro in two tries! Winning a group that consisted of Montenegro, Wales, Switzerland and Bulgaria does not make you a top ten team.


  • Charles

    Even funnier is that if the WCup were now. The betting would show them as third favorite. Just like last WCup.


  • Jeff P

    Hey 33 must be pretty damn good if the star-studded Belgium side is still 7 spots behind us!


  • away goals

    Why is it so hard to understand that these rankings are not a subjective exercise?England have lost only two of their last 26 competitive matches.

    Do I think they’re the third best team in the world? Absolutely not. But the rankings are based on results, and england have gotten results.

    Also, you’re really bringing up how england “benefited” from a missed goal line call? Because we all know england haven’t been on the wrong end of any of those…


  • Eurosnob

    You can call these rankings objective, but it does not make them accurate. When the formula in the rankings leads to absurd results, when England is ranked No. 3, while Brazil is ranked No. 12, it needs to be modified. Did England beat any top teams in these 26 competitive matches you referenced? What was the level of the competition they faced? Facing the likes of Wales, Montenegro or Bulgaria in Euro 2012 qualification or Belarus, Kazakhstan and Andorra in qualification to WC 2010 surely helps to limit the number of losses (it’s 12 games against clearly inferior opposition right there). When England faces better teams (Germany in the WC, Italy in Euro) they get steamrolled. If you are playing in the WC, who would you rather face No. 3 England or No. 12 Brazil?


  • away goals

    The quality of competition is taken into account within the rankings.

    And england didn’t get ‘steamrolled’ by italy. The match ended in a draw.

    Are the rankings perfect? Of course not. But they are an acceptable solution to seeding teams for the world cup. That’s all they need to do.

    (It’s been explained here before, but since you seem upset about it: as the host nation, brazil will be seeded for the world cup regardless of rank. And since they don’t play any qualifiers, they will continue to drop in the standings. Best to think of them as being “outside” the rankings.)


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