England leapfrog France and climb to THIRD in the FIFA rankings after latest World Cup qualifying wins – their highest position since 2012 – as Belgium and Brazil lead the way
- England have risen to third in the FIFA rankings after a successful September
- Gareth Southgate’s side won two and drew one of their World Cup qualifiers
- It was enough to lift them above France in the latest international rankings
- Belgium continue to lead the way with Brazil occupying second position
- It is the highest England have ranked since just after Euro 2012
England have risen to third in FIFA’s world ranking as a result of a successful September of World Cup qualifiers – their highest position since 2012.
Gareth Southgate’s men followed up their run to the final of Euro 2020 over the summer with victories over Hungary and Andorra, plus a draw with Poland, to move closer to Qatar 2022.
It was enough to leapfrog France in FIFA’s list with only top-ranked Belgium and Brazil now ahead of them.
Harry Kane celebrates his goal against Poland, helping England up to third in the FIFA rankings
England thrashed Hungary 4-0 as they took another step towards the 2022 Qatar World Cup
England moved ahead of France in the list after they could only draw two of their qualifiers
FIFA Ranking top 10
3. England (+1)
4. France (-1)
7. Portugal (+1)
8. Spain (-1)
10. Denmark (+1)
(Changes from August ranking)
England had been ranked fourth since April 2019 but finally moved above France after the reigning world champions could only draw against Bosnia and Ukraine in September’s qualifiers.
The last time England were third in the world was in August and September 2012, not long after they reached the European Championship quarter-finals.
Following the debacle of Euro 2016, the Three Lions slumped as low as 15th but have slowly rebuild their credibility under Southgate’s stewardship.
Their run to the semi-finals at the 2018 World Cup in Russia resulted in a big leap from joint 12th to sixth and they have continued to climb with consistent qualifying results and their run to the Euro 2020 final.
Despite the blow of conceding a late equaliser to Poland in Warsaw last week, England have taken 16 points from their six qualifiers so far to top Group I.
Sitting four points ahead of second-placed Albania and five clear of Poland, they could seal their spot at the World Cup next month when they face Andorra away and Hungary at home.
Belgium won all three of their qualifiers against Estonia, Czech Republic and Belarus earlier this month to maintain their comfortable lead in Group E.
They continue to lead the rankings despite exiting the Euros at the quarter-final stage to eventual winners Italy, who are ranked fifth.
Belgium won all three of their September World Cup qualifiers to remain in first position
Brazil remain second in the latest FIFA list after winning two World Cup qualifiers this month
Brazil bounced back from their defeat to Argentina in July’s Copa America final with World Cup qualifying wins over Chile and Peru but their game with Argentina was abandoned amid farcical scenes when health officials stopped the game.
Elsewhere in the rankings, Portugal move into seventh after swapping positions with Iberian neighbours Spain, while Denmark move up a place to 10th.
Scotland and Northern Ireland are upward movers, climbing four places each to No 45 and No 47 respectively. Wales remain in 19th and the Republic of Ireland sit 50th.