U.S. moves up to 20th in FIFA world rankings

February 11, 2009

ZURICH -- The United States moved up two spots to 20th in the February FIFA rankings, the highest the Americans have been on the list since January 2008.

Mexico moved up two places to 24th heading into Wednesday night's World Cup qualifier against the United States in Columbus, Ohio.

European champion Spain remained first for the eighth consecutive month. The top 10 was unchanged, with Germany second, followed by the Netherlands, Italy, Brazil, Argentina, Croatia, England, Russia and Turkey.

Nicaragua, which finished fifth in the recent Central American championship, rose 50 spots to No. 132. Tournament winner Panama went up 33 spots to 50th and runner-up Costa Rica gained nine places and is now 38th.

Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press