USA stay on top
© AFP

Once again, the Algarve Cup, an annual competition played in the early part of the year, has led to changes in the upper reaches of the FIFA/Coca-Cola Women's World Ranking. Although the USA eventually lost a thrilling final in a penalty shoot-out against Sweden, they still hold on to the lead at the top of the ranking.

The Swedes, for their part, caught the eye with victories over world champions Germany and Finland. Germany, however, slipped outside of the top-two for the first time since the end of 2003 (3rd, down one spot). Brazil, meanwhile, have claimed second place despite not having played recently (2nd, up one spot).

The tournament in southern Portugal was not kind to Norway though, as they lost all three of their group matches and finished in ninth place. As a result, they also lost ground in the ranking (9th, down three spots). By contrast, Denmark climbed one place (to 6th) on the back of their victory over Germany in the match for third place.

England's triumph in the Cyprus Women's Cup may not have resulted in a higher position (10th, no change), but they are now hot on the heels of Norway, France and Japan. Brazil are not the only team currently in their highest-ever position as their feat has been matched by Japan (7th, up two spots), Korea Republic (21st, up one spot), India (50th, up two spots), South Africa (54th, up four spots) and Turkey (59th, up five spots).

The next FIFA Women's World Ranking will be published on 26 June 2009.