Nigeria went down one spot in the latest FIFA Coca Cola World ranking of national teams announced today. The Super Eagles who will be playing in the Russian World Cup, were ranked 52nd, one place down from their position last month. Cameroon slid six points to displace Nigeria at 51st.
Tunisia were the first African team, in 23rd, followed by Senegal in the 27th. Congo DR climbed four places to attain the 39th position, while Egypt, defending Nations Cup winners slipped 13 places to 43rd. Morocco are 42nd, in the new ranking.
The Super Eagles, however, remain seventh in Africa, where Tunisia, Senegal, DR Congo, CHAN champions Morocco, Egypt and Cameroon make up Africa’s top six countries.
Ghana, Burkina Faso and Algeria are eighth, ninth and 10th in Africa.
Iceland climbed to an all-time high position of 18th in the ranking.
The rise of the FIFA World Cup bound Icelanders (18th, up 2) is one of the more notable changes in a February table left largely unaltered by a quiet period of international action.
Just 34 international friendlies, 28 of which were in Africa, came into the equation, resulting in a static top 15 that is still headed by Germany, Brazil and Portugal (1st, 2nd and 3rd respectively, all unchanged).
There was some significant movement further down the order, though, with Venezuela (48th, up 4), Hungary (49th, up 5) and Jamaica (50th, up 5) all entering the top 50 at the expense of Cameroon (51st, down 6), Ghana (54th, down 4), and Burkina Faso (57th, down 13).
Those losses by the African trio, and others in the continent, can be attributed both to results in the recent friendlies and to the devaluation of last year’s CAF Africa Cup of Nations in calculating points tallies. But there were gains as well as losses for sides in the Mother Continent, with Congo (88th, up 8) and Sudan (118th, up 6) among the biggest climbers.