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Added December 23rd, 2014 by Ian

U.S. Women’s Soccer team lose seven-year grip on number one ranking

FIFA recently released its rankings for the world’s male and female soccer teams and there was a bit of a surprise as the American women’s squad wasn’t at the top of them. This is the first time in the last seven tears that the U.S. team hasn’t been ranked number one. That honour has now been bestowed on Germany due to their away victories over England and Sweden. The U.S. women recently lost to Brazil and China and that certainly hurt their chances of holding onto the number one position.

Germany was ranked number one with the U.S. at two, followed by France at third and Japan in fourth place. The rest of the top 10 is made up of Sweden at number five, England at six, Korea DPR in seventh, Brazil at number eight, Canada in ninth place and Australia at 10th. Five women’s teams received their highest-ever rankings. These were France, Holland at number 11, Costa Rica at 37, Ecuador at 46 and Paraguay at number 50. Holland also qualified for its first-ever women’s World Cup, which will take place in Canada in 2015.

The next FIFA rankings likely won’t change too much since they will be released at the end of March and there won’t be too many games played between now and then for most teams. However, those who have qualified for the upcoming World Cup will be trying to keep in top form by playing friendlies. The World Cup kicks off on June 6th and the Americans haven’t received any breaks there either as they have been drawn in the proverbial ‘Group of Death.’

The U.S. will play in Group D along with Australia, Nigeria, and Sweden. Manager Jill Ellis has a lot of depth in the squad and will be trying to fine tune it before the tournament. Ellis is hoping that Alex Morgan, one of her top players, will soon be ready to return to the side after injuring an ankle during the World Cup qualifying campaign. While the Americans caught a tough break in the group draw, Germany will lay in Group B against Thailand, Norway and the Ivory Coast.

Japan enters the women’s World Cup as the defending champions and they’re among the favourites to win the 2015 edition along with Germany and the U.S. But even though the American women have been ranked the top team for the past seven years, they haven’t won the World Cup since back in 1999.

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