Top ten stays the same
© AFP

After a slow start to the year, things have started to pick up with a total of 57 'A' matches being played since the last FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking in January. With none of the top teams taking part in any of these matches, however, there have been no changes within the top 10 this month. Spain still lead by a clear margin, followed by Germany, the Netherlands, Italy, Brazil and Argentina. Newly ranked within the top 20 are Romania, who have gained four places (17th, up 4).

Of the 57 matches played, 26 were friendlies, while 31 were qualifying matches for continental championships - 14 played in the CONCACAF region and 17 in the AFC region. The UNCAF Nations Cup had a big impact on the top 50 this month, with the two finalists - Costa Rica (38th, up 9) and Panama (50th, up 33) - moving up the ranks. Making history, Panama not only secured their first victory in this competition, but also succeeded in gaining a place among the world's 50 best teams for the first time.

Notable winners outside the top 50 include Bahrain (74th, up 15), Benin (81st, up 18), Bermuda (116th, up 15) and Nicaragua (132nd, up 50). Qualifying for the CONCACAF Gold Cup for the first time ever, Nicaragua are the biggest movers this month, securing their highest placing since the inception of the FIFA/ Coca-Cola World Ranking, together with Australia (27th, up 2), Gambia (73rd, up 2) and Montenegro (111th, up 2).