Nigeria drop to 48th in FIFA rankings ahead of World Cup

Abuja, June 8 (IANS) Nigeria have dropped to 48th in the FIFA’s global rankings in June, a week away from the start of 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.

Its World Cup opponents Argentina, Croatia, and Iceland are on fifth, 20th and 22nd positions respectively in the FIFA rankings. Its first match is against Croatia on June 16, Xinhua news agency reported.

A flurry of pre-FIFA World Cup friendlies has left its mark on the latest rankings. The west African country also dropped to the seventh place in Africa, an official statement on FIFA’s website on Thursday said.

Nigeria were on the 47th spot and sixth position respectively in the FIFA rankings and continental football in April and May.

In all its outings of late, Nigeria either faced a defeat or draw. Super Eagles were beaten 1-0 by the Czech Republic on Wednesday, during a last pre-World Cup friendly played in Austria.

On June 2, the team saw a defeat by the Three Lions of England. The match, played at the Wembley Stadium, ended 2-1. Nigeria had played a 1-1 draw on home soil against DR Congo on May 28.

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