Malawi climb one step, Zambia soars in FIFA rankings

Malawi National Soccer Team, the Flames, has climbed a single step up in both the world and African ranks according to Fifa’s latest rankings released on Wednesday January 15th, 2012.

The Flames, who are currently in camp expecting face Chad month end have only managed to move up with a single step in both world and African ranks.

On the world ranking, the Flames have risen from position 99 to 98 while on the African continent they have moved from 23 to 22.

Zambia have shot up 28 places breaking into the top 50 for the first time in eleven years after winning the African Nations Cup on Sunday.

The Chipolopolo (The Copper Bullets) moved into 43rd spot, their highest position since February 2001, after beating Ivory Coast on penalties following a goalless final in Libreville.

The Zambian side becomes the continent’s fourth-ranked nation after starting the African Cup in 16th place.

Meanwhile, President Michael Sata has urged the newly crowned African football champions to remain focused ahead of future engagements.
He was speaking during a luncheon at State House in honor of the victorious Zambia National Soccer Team,

President Sata said winning Africa’s most prestigious trophy must be the beginning of better things to come.

Despite losing the decider, Ivory Coast climbed three places to 15th and are the continent’s highest-placed team. The Elephants did not concede a goal in the tournament.

Spain stayed top of the rankings while Germany moved up to second and Netherlands dropped to third even though neither side played a game in the last month.

FIFA said the change was “due to the devaluation of matches from previous years.”

Similarly, Brazil dropped to seventh and Portugal moved up to sixth while Argentina dropped out of the top ten, losing their place to Denmark.

Chipolopolo Boys captain hands the Africa Cup of Nations football trophy to President Michal Sata in Zambia February 14,2012.

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