USA extend lead thanks to Olympic triumph
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Despite experiencing mixed fortunes at the Olympic Football Tournament in London, the three teams at the top of the FIFA/Coca-Cola Women’s World Ranking maintained their positions in August.

Gold medal winners the USA have strengthened their grip at the top with a run of nine consecutive wins, posting a total that is just short of their all-time high of 2233 points in May 2010 and the overall record of 2234 points set by Germany in 2005.

However, world champions Japan have lost ground to second-placed Germany after a patchy performance at the Olympics, due largely to the Nadeshiko’s goalless draw against outsiders South Africa. After being knocked out of the tournament at the quarter-final stage, Sweden have been overtaken by Brazil and France, the latter knocking out the Swedes en route to the semi-finals and returning to the top five in the process, matching their highest position of 2006. Italy are also back in the top ten following Korea DPR’s drop of three places.

Apart from the USA, two countries have impressed over the past three months: South Africa, after their unexpected 0-0 draw against reigning world champions Japan, and Wales, whose defeats of the Republic of Ireland, Israel and Belgium have catapulted them into the top 40 for the first time.

The results of 98 international matches have been recognised in the current edition of the FIFA/Coca-Cola Women’s World Ranking, the majority of them UEFA Women’s EURO 2013 qualifiers and matches for the Women’s Olympic Football Tournament London 2012.

Three teams (Nepal, Sri Lanka and Pakistan) have been inactive for over 18 months and are therefore no longer ranked. Antigua and Barbuda have re-entered the ranking in 126th position, which brings the total number of teams to 127.

Leader

USA (unchanged)

Moves into top ten

Italy (from 11th to 10th)

Moves out of top ten

Korea DPR (from 8th to 11th)

Matches played in total

98

Most matches played

Canada, Japan, Korea DPR (10 each)

Biggest move by points

USA (up 43 points)

Biggest move by ranks

Wales (43rd, up 6)

Biggest drop by points

Sweden (down 47 points)

Biggest drop by ranks

Hungary (39th, down 4)

Newly ranked teams

Antigua and Barbuda (126th, 757 points)

Teams that are no longer ranked

3 – Nepal, Sri Lanka, Pakistan