Spain Leads, Europe Gets Stronger in Fifa Rankings

ZURICH (AP) — World and European champion Spain leads the latest FIFA rankings, with European teams holding the top four positions as they prepare to begin qualifying for the 2014 World Cup.

The United States rose three places to No. 33.

Spain maintains its lead over Germany and England, and Portugal moves into fourth place above South American champion Uruguay.

Portugal beat Panama in an exhibition last month, and Uruguay drew with France. Results from four years ago also dropped out of FIFA’s calculations.

Italy is No. 6, followed by Argentina and the Netherlands. Croatia and Denmark complete the top 10.

World Cup host Brazil is up one spot to No. 12.

Ivory Coast leads Africa at No. 16, No. 21 Mexico is CONCACAF’s best and Japan leads Asia at No. 23.

Source: Associated Press