FIFA Top 50 World Rankings
FIFA announced a new monthly world ranking system on Aug. 13, 1993 designed to “provide a constant international comparison of national team performances.” The rankings are based on a mathematical formula that weighs strength of schedule, importance of matches and goals scored for and against. Games considered include World Cup qualifying and final rounds, Continental championship qualifying and final rounds, and friendly matches.
The formula was altered slightly in January 1999. Now the rankings annually take into account a team's seven best matches of the last eight years, thereby favoring some teams that have been consistent over a long period of time but that may have stumbled just recently. At the end of the year, FIFA designates a Team of the Year. Teams of the Year so far have been Germany (1993), Brazil (1994-2000) and France (2001). The USA reached their highest ever ranking (eighth) in Sept. 2002.
FIFA Top 50 World Rankings: 2001
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