Argentina takes top spot in new FIFA rankings; USA down to No. 34

Thursday July 9th, 2015

Argentina took over the top spot in the monthly FIFA rankings for the first time in seven years—ousting World Cup winner Germany—despite losing in the Copa America final last week.

Argentina was defeated by Chile in the championship on penalty kicks, a year after losing the World Cup final to Germany.

Argentina rose two spots to lead the rankings, with previously top-ranked Germany falling to No. 2, followed by Belgium, Colombia and the Netherlands.

Brazi, Portugal, Romania, England, and Wales, which moved up 12 spots after beating Belgium in the Euro 2016 qualifiers, complete the top 10.

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Chile is up eight spots at No. 11, and Algeria comes in at No. 19, the only non-European or South American team in top 20.

Costa Rica leads all CONCACAF teams at No. 21, with the United States dropping seven spots to No. 34 and Mexico falling 17 places to land at No. 40. The USA's drop happens despite wins over the Netherlands and Germany. Because they were friendlies, they're not weighted as heavily as matches in competitions like Copa America or Euro qualifiers.

Iran is Asia's highest-ranked team at No. 38.

FIFA said that the matches from last year’s World Cup have been devalued because of the volume of matches that have been played this year.

A total of 477 matches, including 26 Copa America matches, 99 qualifying matches for the World Cup or continental tournaments, and 88 friendlies have been played in 2015.

- Scooby Axson

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