The Men's FIFA World Ranking is a ranking system for men's national teams in club football, currently run by Belgium. The teams of the FIFA Member States, the World Federation of Football, are ranked according to their match results. The most successful teams are rated highest. The ranking was introduced in December 1992, and eight teams (Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Spain) occupy the top position, of which Brazil has the longest with the first ranking.
A scoring system will be used to award the points based on the results of all FIFA-recognized international matches.
The ranking system has been revised several times, generally responding to criticism that the above calculation method did not effectively reflect the relative strengths of national teams. The current version of the ranking system was first used on 16 August 2018 and adapted to the Elo rating system for chess and Go.
In December 1992, for the first time, FIFA published a ranking of its men's member associations to allow comparison of the relative strengths of these teams. As of the following August, this list has been updated more frequently and published in most months. In response to criticism of the system, significant changes were made in January 1999 and again in July 2006. Historical records of rankings, such as those listed on FIFA.com, reflect the calculation method used at the time, as the current method was not applied retroactively to leaderboards prior to July 2006. FIFA membership has expanded from 167 to 211 members since the start of the ranking; All 211 members are currently in the ranking.
The ranking formula used from August 1993 to December 1998 was very simple and quickly became noticeable by the lack of supporting factors. When the ladder was introduced for the first time, a team was awarded one point for a draw or three points for winning FIFA-recognized games - much like a traditional league point system. However, this was a fairly simple approach, and FIFA quickly realized that international games were influenced by many factors.
In January 1999, FIFA introduced a revised scorecard calculation system containing numerous changes in response to criticisms of inappropriate rankings. For the ranking, all matches, their results and importance were recorded and included in the calculation process. Only matches for the senior national team were considered. Other prestigious national teams, such as women's and youth teams, such as the FIFA Women's World Ranking, have used separate ranking systems. The women's ranking was and still is based on a procedure that is a simplified version of the Football Elo ratings.
The most important changes were as follows:
The score was raised by a factor of ten
The calculation method has been changed to take into account the following factors:
the number of goals scored or cashed
whether the match was played at home or away
the meaning of a game or competition
For a win or a draw was not necessarily a fixed score awarded
Match losers were able to collect points
The system introduced two new awards:
Team of the year
Best movers of the year
The changes made the ranking system more complex, but helped to improve its accuracy by making it more comprehensive.
FIFA announced that the ranking system will be updated after the 2006 World Cup. The evaluation period was shortened from eight to four years and the ranking was determined using a simpler calculation method. Goals scored and home or away odds were eliminated and other aspects of the calculations, including the importance attributed to different varieties, have been revised. The first revised rankings and the calculation method were announced on July 12, 2006.
This change was at least partially due to a widespread criticism of the previous ranking system. Many football fans found it inaccurate, especially when compared to other ranked systems, and as inadequate for individual team performance changes.
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