England moved up to 18th place in the latest FIFA world rankings released on Thursday. Roy Hodgson’s team have risen two places after wins over Norway and Switzerland this month but remain behind the likes of Costa Rica, Greece, Mexico and the USA. Germany still top the rankings despite losing 4-2 to second-place Argentina in a friendly, which was a rematch of the World Cup final in the summer. Germany were crowned world champions after a 1-0 extra-time win in Brazil. Northern Ireland leaped up 24 places to 71.
The Republic of Ireland also moved up four places to 62. Scotland moved down a place to 29 equal with Wales. Chris Coleman’s Wales have risen 12 places after their 2-1 win over Andorra, courtesy of two goals from Gareth Bale. Colombia climbed one place to three even though they lost 1-0 to Brazil in a friendly and swap places with Holland, who suffered two defeats as the Gus Hiddink era got off to the worst possible start.