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USMNT climb to 28th in latest FIFA World Rankings

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The U.S. Men’s National Team saw their steady descent in the FIFA World Rankings come to a halt this month after their success in March’s World Cup qualifiers helped them climb up the charts.

The U.S. moved up five places to No. 28 in the latest world rankings, released on Thursday. The Americans were among the biggest movers in the Top 30, along with Croatia and Denmark.

Last month’s World Cup qualifying win vs. Costa Rica and draw vs. Mexico helped the U.S. move back into the Top 30 and gain some ground on Mexico, which moved up one spot to No. 14 in the latest rankings. Costa Rica made the biggest jump in CONCACAF, climbing six places after posting a qualifying win against Jamaica.

The Top Three in the rankings remained the same, with Spain, Germany and Argentina holding the top spots. Brazil continued a steady decline, falling to 19th, an absurdly low ranking caused by the fact that they don’t have World Cup qualifiers on their schedule to help generate points necessary to move up.

What do you think of the latest rankings? See 28th being a fair spot for the U.S.?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. US football team has been improved in the football. They are at 28th position in the world football ranking. A few days ago they has finished a successful match for the FIFA world cup qualifying round.

  2. The good news here is that, not only did the US move upward in the FIFA rankings, so did Panama, Honduras, Jamaica and Mexico. This is important because it moves ConCaCaf further clear of Asia and closer to CAF (the African federation.)

    Why is this important? It”s important because your Confederation rank is a multiplier of points in the Grand FIFA equation in rankings. This means as our Concacaf ranking go up, so too will our FIFA points and positions, presuming we keep winning or tie against upper ranked opponents, While it is wishful thinking that the US could move into a top 12 by WC time, for future years it’s something to build on. Higher FIFA rankings give you a better seed in the WC. The US got jobbed a few years ago when it appeared that we qualified for a seed, but then FIFA changed the equation and gave it to Italy.

    If the US has grand plans to make it to a WC semi-final, it will need to be a seed, or beat out the seed in their WC group. When we won the group in the last WC, we beat out England, a far superior (on paper) team and got their seed. We needed to beat Ghana, not Germany, or Brazil, or any other of the highly seeded teams. Had we beat Ghana, we would have faced Uruguay, a good team, but not Argentina or Brazil. Beating Uruguay would have place the US in the semi’s. It was not a tall order. And the path was paved with opponents that the US could beat without a huge upset. It was a clear showing the power of rankings.

    Little things like moving up in the ranking do matter in the long run.

  3. Mali…watch out….the Yanks are Comin….the Eagles are now 26th….the last time the USA ranked higher was November of last year.

    • can you confidently name 19/20 teams better than Mexico. Don’t say you can name 15/16 because there really isn’t any difference between 15 and 17. I cheer hard for the USA when we play Mexico. However, even in that last game, I clearly saw that we rarely threatened, but instead closed the barricades and withstood a beating. Remember, the legitimately could have won 1 or 2 – – 0 on penalties.

      • I’ll take a shot these teams are not in order but are better than mexico:
        Spain, Portugal, Germany, France, England, Netherlands, Brazil, Argentina, Italy, Russia, Japan, Belguim, Ghana, Croatia, Columbia, Ecudor. That’s 16 right there and there are some that are probably too close to call like South Korea and Chile.

        Not saying mexico couldn’t get a result against these teams but I would expect each to be favored in a nuetrul site game.

      • I agree with the usual ones, but how to you rank Japan, Croatia, Ecuador or even Ghana above Mexico? They all seem pretty even to me, but then again I actually watch their games. Even Brazil and Italy seem even on previous matches.

      • That’s because you are a paragon of manliness, amazing to all the eye sees. It would be excellent if people like you could tone down the rhetoric on the board with exclamations like”but then again I actually watch their games”. Maybe dude actually has a life and isn’t a message board gangster like you?

        Actually, keep it up, you make me feel even better because I’m NOT you. Croatia and Ecuador would be favored in more than half the games because they actually strike with purpose and don’t blow chances, see US game.

    • Umm, because they are mortal lock to make the final 16 of the World Cup and do every four years. 15 is about as low as you can put a country like that.

  4. ELO and FIFA rankings are both-on aggregate-roughly reasonable. I mostly just divide into top-half and bottom-half of the first 32 . By that measure, it is about right: Is the US in the bottom half of the top 32? Sure. Is Mexico just barely in the top half of the top 32? Seems about right. Etc.

    • Yes..I kinda agree with your method. Rankings generally have a degree of arbitrariness to them. I generally sort teams out this way (if a world cup were held at this very moment):

      – Top 5: legit chance of winning
      – Top 8/10: legitfair quarter finalist
      – Top 16/20: should make it out
      – Top 30 (or 32): Should qualify

      After that, I don’t care who is 1 or 3, 11 or 18, 20 or 30

  5. The FIFA ranking system has it’s flaws but it’s fun to discuss.

    IMO the ranking is close but not quite what I would say. I think the united states fits somewhere in the 20-25 range. We should always qualify for the World cup but we need to slightly over achieve to get out of the group stage.

  6. I like the rankings. It gives actual reasoning to something that can be so subjective. Would you rather have an AP poll? It’s not perfect, but things like this never are. It does the job of giving a general idea of where a nation stands among others.

  7. No idea how the Netherlands are at 9 and dropping. In their WC qualifiers, they are 6-0-0 with 20 goals scored and 2 goals allowed. I get it, poor showing at Euro but they shouldn’t be continuing to drop at this point. ELO rankings are much better.

    • Dude, they lost 4 consecutive games against Denmark, Portugal, Germany, and then were routed by Belgium. In their most important matches they were probably the worst team in the tournament. A very, very important tournament.

      The best team they played in WCQ was Turkey. Second best? Romania. Twice.

  8. These rankings are so arbitrary much of the time. They are as meaningless as college basketball rankings. The only thing that really matters is how well the team does in the World Cup, or for college BB, how well they do in the NCAA tourney.

  9. 28th sounds about right. we don’t have any world class players nor do we perform superb well in a WC or a European championship or Copa America which FIFA is biased about

  10. Boy, its really hard to believe that Croatia, Portugal, Columbia, and England are ALL ahead of the Netherlands. How does England and Portugal continue to be rated so highly. At least Portugal made it to the Euro 2012 semis (or did they play Spain in the final?). England, when was the last time they got past a quarter final?

    • FIFA rankings will always be a joke as long as England is ranked within the top 10. England gets there by consistently competing against minnows like San Marino in qualifying groups.

    • Explanation # 1,405,654,673,596,764 of this topic (sorry, not directed at you, it just always comes up):
      England is rated so highly because
      a.) they play in UEFA and thus have a high coefficient.
      b.) they play a lot of meaningful games between Euro and WC qualifiers.
      c.) they rarely ever lose. In fact, since their loss to Germany in the 2010 World Cup, they’ve lost a grand total of 3 times, all in friendlies. The PK loss to Italy in the Euro’s actually counts as a draw in the rankings since it went to PK’s.

      Are they a top 10 team based on the eye test? That’s debatable, but it’s really tough to use subjective criteria to rank teams and apply it fairly to all. Bottom line, FIFA rankings are results based and England gets A LOT of results.

      • england is arguably a top 10 nation but they don’t play like it. they beat the likes of san marino, liechenstein, malta 4-0 and act as if it’s impressive.

      • Qualifying statement: I can’t stand the English team and if they went on a 10 game losing streak, the World would be a better place due to the hilarity that would ensue from the resulting media circus and implosion of the English fan base. That said….

        How they act about winning those games isn’t important. What’s important is that they do what top ranked teams are supposed to do, which is beat the teams put in front of them in their qualifying group. England may have moments of sheer blow up and embarrassment (i.e. getting spanked by Germany in WC 2010), but they level those moments with a stockpile of wins against lesser competition and wins/draws against solid European competition. Also keep in mind they’ve beaten Spain, Italy and Brazil in friendlies recently.

        There, that’s all the defending of England I could possibly fathom doing. Excuse me while I go drink a Bud heavy and eat a hot dog.

      • England gets a lot of results? Let’s examine England’s “impressive” record in their WC qualification group a little closer: two victories over San Marino, one win against Moldova, and three draws against Ukraine, Montenegro and Poland. This record does not make me think they are a top 10 team.

  11. The US is 25 in the World Football Elo Rankings.

    Others of interest:

    1. Spain
    2. Germany
    3. Brazil
    4. Argentina
    5. Netherlands
    6. England
    7. Italy
    8. Croatia
    9. Russia
    10. Colombia
    13. Mexico
    15. France
    21. Japan
    25. US
    27. S. Korea
    38. Costa Rica
    46. Honduras

  12. Let’s save everybody some time. We seem to go around the same loop each time these rankings are published. Just use the following numbers:

    1. FIFA rankings are skewed and meaningless.
    2. But they’re important in WC seeding.
    3. XXX is ranked too low (e.g., “3 – Brazil”).
    4. XXX is ranked too high (e.g., “4 – Costa Rica”).
    5. U.S. ranking is a good sign.
    6. U.S. is a disappointment/embarrassment.

    • The fifa rankings are part of the puzzle when it comes to seeding teams in fifa sanctioned tournaments. Brain Guy, you actually need a Brain to be called that

      • Simon and Nate: First of all, number 5 was supposed to read “U.S. ranking is a disappointment/embarrassment.” My bad. But the bigger point is that I was just offering a short-hand way of referring the range of opinions that always crop up whenever these rankings are released. It wasn’t just a listing of my views. My choice #2 captured your sentiment, Simon. Finally, while I do indeed have a brain, thank you, the name is a reference to an old TV show.

      • True…but we are not going to jump enough or get ahead of Mexico in order to really benefit

      • Remember when the U.S. was ranked #5 at the time of the draw for the 2006 World Cup and FIFA rewarded us with a spot in the seeded Pot A? No?

      • Can’t tell if he was being sarcastic, but we weren’t seeded. The seeds were determined by ranking and previous World Cup performance. Using they formula from 2002, I believe the US would have been seeded. However, late in the game, they changed to formula to either include 1998 or exclude 1994 (can’t remember if was an increase or decrease) — either way, it effectively increased the influence of 1998, when we finished last in our group, thus pushing us out of Pot A.

  13. FIFA rankings are flawed and terrible due to the formulas they use, Brazil at 19 cause they have only been able to play friendlies? That makes perfect sense to me, not.


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