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Argentina jump to second in FIFA Rankings

Argentina have moved into second place in the FIFA world rankings after clinching qualification for the World Cup finals on Tuesday.

Alejandro Sabella’s men made sure of their place at Brazil 2014 with an emphatic 5-2 win over Paraguay in Asuncion, Lionel Messi scoring a double as the two-time winners cruised to victory.

That success has seen them rise above Colombia and Germany and into the top two, with holders Spain remaining at the top following a victory over Finland and 2-2 draw with Chile.

Cesare Prandelli’s Italy are up into fourth following a 2-1 victory over Czech Republic, which secured their place at the World Cup.

Belgium are on the brink of qualification after a comfortable 2-0 success against Scotland.

Marc Wilmots’ men have yet to lose in their qualifying campaign so far, and they now sit in their highest ever position in the rankings after jumping four spots to sixth.

Uruguay are one place behind them, climbing back into the top 10 on the back of their 2-0 win over Colombia, with Brazil up to eighth courtesy of friendly wins over Australia and Portugal respectively.

Netherlands are among the fallers, Louis van Gaal’s men – who were held by Estonia on Friday – dropping four places to ninth despite clinching their place in Brazil with victory over Andorra on Tuesday.

United States will be at the World Cup finals for the seventh consecutive time following their 2-0 win over Mexico.

Jurgen Klinsmann’s side have risen six places to 13th as a result of that triumph, while Costa Rica, who ensured their spot at the finals with a 1-1 draw with Jamaica, are up from 39th to 33rd.

England have dropped to their lowest ranking since 2001, falling to 17th despite holding on to top spot in their qualifying group with a win over Moldova and a draw against Ukraine.

Meanwhile France, who appear destined to face a play-off in order to reach the finals, are down to 25th. The 1998 champions slipping to their lowest ranking since 2010.

South Korea are the lowest ranked team to have qualified for the World Cup, they sit at number 58 after dropping two places following a defeat to Croatia on Tuesday.

Thu 12 September, 2013
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