By Adedapo Adesanya
Nigeria moved up to 29th position as the World Rankings returned on Thursday after six months of being suspended due to the outbreak of the coronavirus as footballing activities were suspended.
As fixtures returned for the first time earlier this month, mainly across Europe, the ranking released by the football body, Federation of International Football Association (FIFA) and Coca-Cola is back.
The jump means the Super Eagles, with 1493 points, are now part of the 30 best countries in the world after moving from the 31st position it was in March 2020.
On the African continent, the ranking puts the Super Eagles in third place behind the Teranga Lions of Senegal, who are in 20th position (first in Africa) and the Carthage Eagles of Tunisia, who occupy the 26th position (second in Africa).
Others after Nigeria are African champions Algeria (35), Morocco (43), Ghana (46), Egypt (51), Cameroon (53), Mali (57) and DR Congo (57) to complete Africa’s top 10.
Nigeria last played in November 2019, when they defeated Lesotho 4-2 in an African Cup of Nations qualifier.
They were due to return to action in March with a 2022 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying double-header against Sierra Leone, but the games were postponed due to COVID-19.
The Nigerian side is, however, billed to play Ivory Coast and Tunisia next month in friendly games in Austria.
On the world ranking table, there was no change among the top four as Belgium, France, Brazil and England kept their places from first to fourth in that order on the latest update.
Portugal, on the back of good performances in their UEFA Nations League games earlier this month, moved up by two places to fifth position.
Uruguay, Spain, Croatia, Argentina and Colombia completed the top 10 from sixth in that order. Mexico, Italy, Netherlands, Germany, Switzerland, Denmark, Chile, Sweden, and Poland occupy the 11th position to 19th for the month.
The next ranking will take place on October 22.
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