Ireland reach five-year high in FIFA World Rankings

The team have risen ten places in the past month

BY Daniel Kelly 09:29 Thursday 24 November 2016, 9:29 24 Nov 2016

Ireland's James McClean and Seamus Coleman after the game Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Ryan Byrne

Ireland's win over Austria in Vienna earlier this month has seen the team rise 10 places in the FIFA World Rankings.

Martin O'Neill's side are now up to 23rd in the World. Five years ago to the month, the team reached 21st place, on their way to qualifying for Euro 2012.

The team are now the 14th best team in Europe according to the rankings, with only Wales ranked ahead of them, in the teams in Ireland's World Cup qualifying group.

Austria are 31st (-1), Serbia have also dropped a spot to 44th place. Georgia move up three spots to 113th, while Moldova are Europe's fifth-biggest movers, up 11 to 162nd.

The progress is a testament to Martin O'Neill's success as manager. The team were ranked 60th when the Derry native took charge three-years ago. The team were sandwiched between Cameroon and Libya in the rankings.

Ireland's high ranking could also help the team in their bid to qualify for Euro 2020. The qualifying draw for the tournament could see the team enter the draw as a second-ranked team.

While the rankings are secondary to World Cup qualification, it is great to see the team move in the right direction.

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