For the first time in 21 years and only the sixth time after Independence, the Indian national team have been ranked among the top 100 teams in the FIFA World Ranking.
As per the May FIFA World Ranking released earlier today, India have been ranked 100th clubbed with Lithuania, Nicaragua and Estonia, and stay at the 11th spot in AFC.
This is India’s best-ever FIFA World Ranking since April 1996 when India were also ranked 100. India’s highest FIFA ranking till date has been 94, achieved in February 1996.
National Coach Stephen Constantine stated: “As long as we keep heading up the ladder I am happy. It points out that we are heading in the right direction. There are major matches ahead and we cannot take things lightly. There’s no place for complacency.”
All India Football Federation (AIFF) General Secretary Kushal Das said, “It’s pleasing that we are presently ranked 100th. At the same time, we need to stay aware of the challenge in hand. The AFC Asian Cup Qualifiers UAE 2019 are an acid test for us. AIFF has been providing the national team with the best of exposure and facilities and we expect the team to keep up the good work.”
Historic wins including a 1-0 victory over Myanmar in the AFC Asian Cup qualifiers – the first ever win in Myanmar in over 64 years, and India’s first ever win in an away encounter in over a decade where Constantine’s men defeated Cambodia 3-2 in an International Friendly has propelled the Indian national team to the rise in the FIFA World Ranking.
Add to that the 4-1 win against South American opponent Puerto Rico has also added gloss to India’s point tally.
The national team has secured victories in 11 of their last 13 matches (including an unofficial match against Bhutan) scoring 31 goals in the process.