Nehru Cup triumph sees India re-enter top 150 in FIFA chart

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New Delhi, Sep 19 (UNI) The Nehru Cup triumph India's rare success at the international level in decades, has propelled India five places up to 145th in the latest FIFA rankings issued today.

India thus returned to top 150 after 10 months, having last ranked at 148th in the Novemeber 2006 FIFA chart.

India, which jumped 11 places to 151st last month midway during the Nehru Cup, gained 127 points from their last league match win over Kyrgyzstan and collected 224 points from the final triumph over more fancied Syria.

Interestingly, India now lie just one place below Lebanon -- which lost nine places -- whom it will face on October 8 and 25 in the home and return legs of 2010 World Cup Qualifiers first round.

In the rankings among Asian nations also, India moved up two places to 24th and lie in between Lebanon and eastern neighbours Myanmar.

Meanwhile, world champions Italy returned to the top of the chart after leaping above last month leaders Brazil and Argentina.

The Italians benefited from a 2-1 away win over Ukraine in a qualifying match for next year's European Championship and also picked up points for a 0-0 home draw with France.

Brazil enjoyed three wins out of three over Algeria, the United States and Mexico but still dropped from top spot to third place, since the matches were friendlies carrying less rankings points than Italy's games.

Germany, Netherlands, France, Spain, Portugal, England and Croatia completed the top 10 in descending order.

Among the Asians, Japan (34th) moved up seven places to retain the top slot, followed by Iran (40th), Australia (48th), South Korea (50th) abnd Saudi Arabia (51st).

UNI

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