Solomon Football > News > FIFA Coca-cola world ranking > Solomon Islands moves up in FIFA ranking

Solomon Islands moves up in FIFA ranking

Solomon Islands now settles in the 159th position, 24 places up from where it was before the Oceania Football Confederation (OFC) Nations Cup tournament in June. This is a remarkable achievement for Solomon Islands after suffering years of criticism from the public who interpreted the position in the ranking as a drop in the standard of football in the country.
The main reason for the positive movement was the national team’s strong performance at the OFC nations cup which saw them finish fourth in a line-up of 8 countries. Their position, however, spoke little of the improvement the team made in the competition where they held New Zealand to a 1-1 draw in the group stage. They went on to become the only side to score 3 goals against New Zealand in a single match in the last year but they lost that match 4-3.
Despite the progress made Solomon Islands still ranks behind its rivals including Vanuatu and Fiji who both exited the OFC nations cup in the group stage. New Zealand still leads the pack and they maintain their place in the top 100, currently they are placed 95th.
The biggest jumper in the region, however, are the OFC Nations Cup champions Tahiti. From 179th position prior to the competition they are now at 136. This represents a total movement of 43 places. Tahiti will also have the honour of being the first pacific island country to play in the FIFA Confederations Cup tournament.
The news is, however, received with caution at the Solomon Islands Football Federation (SIFF) where football bosses say that the ranking is only one of the indicators of the growth of football in the country and must be treated as such.
“We have made many strides in other areas which do not impact upon our FIFA ranking such as strong performances from our youth teams and the establishment of our own national league. Solomon Islands continues to be a leader in development as seen with success of the Just Play and LEARN&play programs,” says SIFF general secretary Eddie Ngava.
“We also performed magnificently at the 2011 Pacific Games where we finished with a silver medal. We are the top futsal and beach soccer nation in Oceania and we will continue to achieve more as we grow further,” Ngava says.
Solomon Islands has the opportunity to rise further in the FIFA Coca-cola world ranking once they enter the FIFA 2014 World Cup qualifying round. The first matches in the qualifiers will kick off on 7th of September. Solomon Islands is booked against OFC nations cup winners Tahiti at home in their first match.

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