FIFA Ranking: Black Stars benefit from new formula, rank 45th

BY: Kweku Zurek

The Black Stars of Ghana have risen two places up to 45th and are ahead of World Cup participants Nigeria and Egypt in the FIFA Ranking for August despite not featuring at the tournament.

The Stars who are now the fourth best team on the African rankings benefited from a new formula which was approved by the FIFA Council in June after a lengthy period of testing.

The formula relies on adding/subtracting points won or lost for a game to/from the previous point totals rather than averaging game points over a given time period as in the previous version of the Ranking.

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The changes, of which there are several, include the fact that inactive teams like Ghana now preserve their point totals, with no devaluation of older games.

Points are dropped, however, from losing or drawing against weaker opposition, with the only exception to this rule matches in knockout rounds of major competitions such as the FIFA World Cup.

In the lead-up to the tournament and within the period under review, Ghana played games with World Cup-bound teams Japan and Iceland. Ghana defeated Japan 2-0 courtesy goals by Thomas Partey and Emmanuel Boateng and drew 2-2 with Iceland.

Nigeria moved up one place to 49th while Mohammed Salah's Egypt plummeted from 45th to 65th. The Pharaohs failed to win a game in the World Cup, falling 3-1 to Saudi Arabia in the last match.

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Egypt's fall, represents the biggest drop by any football team in the history of the FIFA rankings.

Tunisia's Carthage Eagles are Africa's highest ranked nation followed by Senegal and Congo DR.

France are top of the world ranking while Belgium ranks second and Brazil, who dropped one position, are third.

FIFA World ranking below;