The National, Wednesday July 11th, 2012
THE national men’s soccer team, the Kundus, have jumped six places in the latest world ranking by governing body, FIFA.
But that has not made any change in the latest Oceania Football Confederation’s (OFC) ranking. PNG sit second last on the ladder. Papua New Guinea has leaped from 187 spot to 181 place on the world ranking.
The biggest mover in the Oceania region is Nations Cup champion Tahiti. Their achievement in winning the premier tournament was rewarded with a remarkable climb in the world rankings. The Eddy Etaeta-coached team has risen 41 places to 138.
They are the biggest movers in the latest edition of the rankings released by FIFA this week.
Their massive climb means they are now behind New Zealand, which finished third at last month’s Nations Cup in the Solomon Islands on the top of the Oceania tree.
Despite their disappointing campaign, the All Whites have seen their standing improve – by five places – to 95, while the stocks of several other Nations Cup participants have risen as well.
They are runners-up New Caledonia (143, up 12), Vanuatu (168, up three) and Solomon Islands (174, up nine). Although not in action in recent months, Tonga (175, up one) and American Samoa (183, up three) have seen their lot improve slightly.
Fiji (161) and Cook Islands (195) have held their places, while the sole Oceania nation on the slide is Samoa, which paid for some heavy defeats in the Solomon Islands with a 17-place drop to 173.
The Oceania rankings are now: 1. New Zealand, 2. Tahiti, 3. New Caledonia, 4. Fiji, 5. Vanuatu, 6. Samoa, 7. Solomon Islands, 8. Tonga, 9. American Samoa, 10. Papua New Guinea, 11. Cook Islands