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Jul 17, 2014

Germany top ranking, Spain slump

ESPN FC's Gary Bailey and Steve Nicol weigh in on some questionable updates to the FIFA World Rankings.

World Cup winners Germany have taken over at the top of FIFA's ranking, while Spain and England both slump down the chart following disappointing campaigns in Brazil.

Germany move into first place for the first time since in almost 20 years, last holding top spot in March 1994. Joachim Low's side have, though, been in the top three since June 2011 and their World Cup success finally moves them back to the summit.

They replace Spain at the top of the standings, who fall seven places to eighth after failing to get out of their group and only managing a victory over Australia. It is Spain's lowest place in the ranking since August 2007.

Argentina climb five places to second after finishing narrow runners-up at the World Cup, with Netherlands also making a gain of a huge 12 places into the top three after finishing third. It is Oranje's highest position since they were second in March 2012.

Brazil move up from seventh to fourth while Belgium complete the top five, up six places, to match their highest-ever ranking from October of last year.

Portugal, Italy and England are among the biggest fallers -- all out of the top 10 -- after, like Spain, they failed to make the knockout rounds. England drop 10 places to 20th, their lowest position since May 1996 when they were 24th having not played any competitive football for two years ahead of hosting Euro 1996.

Portugal drop seven places to 11th while Italy are now 14th from fifth.

France's renaissance continues as they move back into the top 10 in 10th for the first time since May 2010, when they were ninth prior to their implosion in South Africa.

United States drop one place to 15th, with Mexico up one place to 18th.

Elsewhere in the rankings, Turks and Caicos Islands won their first match for six years, against British Virgin Islands in a Concacaf Gold Cup qualifier, to move off the bottom of the rankings -- up 26 places to 181th.

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