Bafana rise in world rankings
Coach Gordon Igesund has described as “excellent” news of Bafana Bafana climbing six places in the latest Fifa/Coca Cola World Rankings released on Wednesday.
South Africa have moved from 62 to 56 in the world rankings, while also breaking into the top 10 on the continent.
Bafana Bafana are now ranked ninth in Africa.
”That is excellent, it’s good news really. It shows we have put in the hard work and made serious progress. Building a solid side is something that takes time but it’s a clear indication that we are on the right track, we have made great strides,” said Igesund.
“This emphasises the importance of rankings. It shows that every match we play is affected whether positively or negatively. Therefore, we should take every match we play seriously. It is very critical that when we play in any match or tournament, we must have our best squad to ensure that we get positive results so we can continue the climb.”
The Bafana Bafana mentor says rankings should not be taken lightly as they play a key role.
“Come big tournaments like the World Cup, if we are not placed higher on the rankings we will not be seeded and we will end up meeting big guns in the event affecting our chances of progressing further.
“So it is important that we strive to be high up among the best. We have an obligation and responsibility to the fans to be in the top 20 in the world and among the best three on the continent - that is our mission. I am glad that we are working towards that direction,” added Igesund.
Ivory Coast are still leading the pack on the continent, followed by Ghana, Mali, Nigeria and Algeria. Completing the top 10 are Tunisia, Zambia, Burkina Faso, South Africa and Equatorial Guinea.
On the world rankings, Spain are still on top, along with Germany, Argentina, Croatia, Portugal, Columbia, England, Italy, Netherlands and Ecuador.
The next rankings will be released on Thursday, 6 June 2013.
Top 10 in Africa
Ivory Coast (12th in the world)
Burkina Faso (50th)
South Africa (56th)
Equatorial Guinea (61st)