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England moves to fourth in FIFA rankings

Feb. 14, 2013 at 7:36 AM

NYON, Switzerland, Feb. 14 (UPI) -- England jumps to fourth in the FIFA men's soccer rankings with Spain still holding onto the No. 1 position.

England posted a 2-1 win over Brazil last month in moving past Italy and Colombia from sixth to fourth. It is the best ranking for England since it was third for two months last summer.

Spain, however, continues to rule the rankings and has been No. 1 for every month but one since May 2010. The Spanish had a 3-1 win over Uruguay and beat England 2-0 in a match considered outside ranking calculation.

Spain actually lost 16 rankings points due to previous match points devaluation but, with 1,590 points, are 153 points ahead of No. 2-ranked Germany. Argentina comes in third with 1,281.

England has 1,160 points, which is three more than No. 5 Italy while Colombia and Portugal are tied for sixth at 1,129. The Netherlands (1,108) is still eighth but Croatia switches places with Russia for the ninth spot. Both teams lost points this month but Croatia lost fewer and has 1,059 while Russia has 1,055 for 10th.

The FIFA world rankings are determined by points awarded from match results in a three-year period, with more recent games given greater weight. Teams get additional points for playing relatively strong opponents. The next ranking update is scheduled for March 14.

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