Feb 13 (Reuters) - Brazil, who sank to an all-time low of 22nd place on the FIFA rankings last June, continued their slow climb back to respectability when they rose to ninth in the latest list published on Thursday.
The five-times world champions and the hosts of this year's finals climbed one place, leapfrogging the Netherlands.
World champions Spain, Germany and Argentina retained first, second and third positions respectively. Portugal moved into fourth spot, changing places with Colombia.
There was movement elsewhere among the leaders, with Switzerland climbing to sixth from eighth, ahead of Uruguay, who slipped one to seventh. Italy went from seventh to eighth.
Most of the rankings were determined by the devaluation of older matches and some friendly internationals. Friendlies will, in the main, determine the rankings in the next few months, ahead of the World Cup, which starts on June 12.
1. (1) Spain
2. (2) Germany
3. (3) Argentina
4. (5) Portugal
5. (4) Colombia
6. (8) Switzerland
7. (6) Uruguay
8. (7) Italy
10. (9) Netherlands
(Reporting by Mike Collett, editing by Stephen Wood)
- Sports & Recreation
- FIFA rankings