By Bill Christian Pacatang
For the first time, Netherlands tops in the FIFA (Federation Internationale de Football) World Rankings while the former world number 1 Spain drops to the second place. That loss of Spain to Italy in their friendly match gave large world ranking points to the 2006 FIFA World Champions, Italy. That lost of Spain to Italy was the reason why they dropped to the 2nd Place and why Netherlands moved up in the 1st Place in the latest FIFA World Rankings.
Also, after the lost of Brazil to Paraguay, Brazil is no longer the "Powerhouse Team" of the world. Brazil dropped down to 6th place in the FIFA World Rankings while Uruguay, the defending champions of Copa America, now ranks 5th in their region. That's their highest ranking since their first FIFA World Cup title during 1930's.
There are also some changes in the FIFA Rankings in the Asian Region. Our very own Philippine Azkals Team is now ranked 162nd. Japan, on the other hand, is still the leader in Asia ( 15th, 1 Up ), while the Socceroos are in the Second Place ( 22nd, 1 Up ). But the most surprising is that the Bangladesh Team. Their rank now is higher than Philippine Azkals. For the past 2 months, the Bangladesh Team is now ranked 139th (8 Up ). Palestine also got passed Philippines at 157th ( 9 Up ).
But the most successful team this month is Mongolia. They are now ranked 160th. They were able to move up by 2 places in the FIFA World Rankings. That's their highest FIFA World Ranking.
These 3 Teams: Bangladesh, Palestine, And Mongolia, were dominated by the Philippines in the recently concluded AFC Challenge Cup 2011. The scores then were: Bangladesh 0-3 Philippines, Palestine 0-0 Philippines, Mongolia 0-2 Philippines. But now, they are slowly creeping in the FIFA World Rankings. That's why the Philippine Azkals should work very hard to fend them off.