The Icelandic men’s national football team took a big leap this morning, giving the nation a reason to jump for joy. It shot up to 22nd place on FIFA’s latest world ranking of men’s national football teams, published this morning. That’s the highest the team has ever ranked, and 12 seats up from FIFA’s last ranking, when it placed 34th.
According to RÚV, this means that departing coach Lars Lagerbäck leaves the team 109 places higher than it was when he began coaching it at the end of 2011. In October of 2012, Iceland ranked 131st, the lowest it has ever been. No wonder many call him king and more than 20 gave him his vote in the presidential election in June. The Swede has worked wonders.
Among European nations, the Icelandic team ranks 15th. It ranks well above teams from other Nordic countries.
Other high-ranking teams taking a big leap are France (up 10 places to rank 7th), Wales (up no less than 15 places to rank 11th), Croatia (up 12 places to reach 15th place), and Poland (up 11 places to rank 16th).
Argentina tops the list, followed by Belgium, Colombia, Germany, Chile, Portugal and France. You can view the whole list here.