Philippines climb FIFA rankings

Philippines climbed nine places to reach a ranking of 125th on the latest FIFA Rankings, which were released on Thursday.

This recent jump can be attributed to the Azkals’ back-to-back wins against North Korea in March and Kyrgyzstan in September.

This sees them top the AFF Member Nations FIFA rankings as well, edging Thailand and Vietnam.

It also makes the Philippines – who are co-hosting the 2016 AFF Suzuki Cup with Myanmar – one of the favourites for the 11th edition of the South East Asian competition which kicks off in November.

Thomas Dooley’s men could have featured even higher on the rankings should their home fixture against Turkmenistan not have been cancelled in early September.

Nonetheless, with a slew of international friendlies scheduled at Philippine Stadium in Bulacan over the next couple months, the Azkals will be backing themselves to rise even further.

Meanwhile, Thailand have slipped 15 places down the FIFA Rankings to 135th after a string of losses.

After losing 3-0 to Qatar in Doha in a friendly last month, the War Elephants have been unsuccessful in their 2018 World Cup Qualifying campaign, suffering losses to Saudi Arabia and Japan.

Vietnam have also lost some ground, slipping three places top 141st despite recent wins over Syria, Hong Kong and Singapore.

Myanmar move up to 153rd after the White Angels beat Hong Kong 3-0 while Indonesia are the biggest movers among the AFF members, gaining ten places to 181st with three wins in their last four outings.