Malta climbed four places in the last edition for the year of the FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking to end 2013 in the 132nd place. At the end of 2012, Malta was 146th.
Over the past twelve months, Malta played ten matches – seven World Cup qualifiers and three friendly matches. Following a goalless draw with northern Ireland in February, Malta suffered a heavy 6-0 defeat to Bulgaria in Sofia followed by a good performance despite a 2-0 defeat to Italy at Ta’ Qali. The main highlight for 2013 was definitely the 1-0 win over Armenia in Yerevan in June – the only win in the 2014 FIFA World Cup campaign. Malta lost 3-0 to Azerbaijan in a friendly match in August. Two narrow 1-2 defeats to Denmark and Bulgaria in September followed before two heavy defeats -1-4 to the Czech Republic at Ta’ Qali and a 6-0 defeat to Denmark in Copenhagen. The last game for 2013 was the 3-2 win over the Faroe Islands in a friendly match last month.
Among the other European countries, Malta is ranked 49th. Lying just ahead of Malta are Cyprus (126, up 1) and Kazakhstan (128, up 4). Behind Malta are Liechtenstein (154, down 2), Faroe Islands (170), Andorra (198) and San Marino (207).
Meanwhile, the top ten of the FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking remain unchanged. Spain continue to lead the table ahead of Germany and Argentina, followed by Colombia, Portugal and Uruguay. Two Asian teams have this month achieved their highest-ever rankings: the Philippines (127th, up 6) and Guam (161st, up 8).
World and European champions Spain top the final ranking of the year for the sixth time in a row, securing themselves once again the title of Team of the Year. The highest climbers of 2013, thanks to nine wins, two draws and only one defeat, are Ukraine, who have collected no fewer than 312 points since December 2012, moving up 29 places to 18th and gaining the title of Mover of the Year for the first time.
It has also been an extremely successful year for Armenia (35th, up 259 points since December 2012) and the USA (14th, up 237 points since December 2012).
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