The All Whites are the biggest mover on the latest FIFA World Rankings.
Anthony Hudson’s team, who are in Belfast preparing to face Northern Ireland on Friday night (Saturday morning NZT) as they get ready for the FIFA Confederations Cup, have climbed 17 places to World No 95.
The OFC Nations Cup Champions are on a great run which has included impressive performances against highly-ranked opposition Mexico and the USA last year, and also advancing to the final stage of OFC Qualifying for the FIFA World Cup in Russia.
It is the second time in a year the All Whites have been the biggest mover on the rankings and Hudson said it was good reward for his team which has been improving consistently in the past three years.
“This is great news for our team as we get ready to take on the world’s best at the Confederations Cup,” said Hudson.
“I think it is important to note that we don’t play as often as many of our rivals so this is a really good achievement from our team. We have long believed that we are better than our ranking suggests and we have a great chance to prove that over the next month at the Confederations Cup. Our goal in Russia is to make New Zealand proud and if we achieve that then I am sure we will continue to climb in the World Rankings.”
The All Whites have a busy month coming up starting with the international friendly against World No 26 Northern Ireland at Windsor Park in Belfast. They play Dublin-based club side Cabinteely on 6 June before their final international friendly against Belarus on 12 June ahead of the ‘Tournament of Champions’.
The top three teams on the FIFA World Rankings remain unchanged as Brazil, Argentina and Germany, while Poland moved into top 10 for first time.
There were other marginal gains for other FIFA Confederations Cup participants with Australia (48th, plus two places) and Cameroon (32nd, up one place).
The next FIFA World Rankings will be published on 6 July 2017.
FIFA World Rankings Summary
Leader Brazil (unchanged)
Moves into top 10 Poland (10, plus 1)
Moves out of top 10 none
Matches played in total 10
Most matches played Benin (3 games)
Biggest move by points Montenegro (plus 87 points)
Biggest move by ranks New Zealand (plus 17 ranks)
Biggest drop by points Burkina Faso (minus 60 points)
Biggest drop by ranks Mauritania (minus 13 ranks)
Newly ranked teams none
Teams that are no longer ranked none
Inactive teams, not ranked none
All Whites fixtures pre-FIFA Confederations Cup
2 June v Northern Ireland in Belfast, Northern Ireland (3 June NZT)
6 June v Cabinteely FC in Dublin, Republic of Ireland (7 June NZT)
12 June v Belarus in Minsk, Belarus (13 June NZT)
Friendly internationals live on SKY Sport
2017 FIFA Confederations Cup – All Whites draw
17 June 6pm (3am 18 June NZT) v Russia, Krestovsky Stadium, St Petersburg
21 June 9pm (6am 22 June NZT) v Mexico Fisht Olympic Stadium, Sochi
24 June 6pm (3am 25 June NZT) v Portugal, Krestovsky Stadium, St Petersburg
All FCC matches live on SKY Sport