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Spain top Fifa rankings for sixth straight year

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Spain top Fifa rankings for sixth straight year
Álvaro Negredo scores with an impressive diving headed goal against Belarus in October. Photo: Jaime Reina/AFP
14:21 CET+01:00
Spain have ended 2013 in top spot in the official rankings for the sixth year in a row, the sport's governing body Fifa said on Thursday.

World and European Cup holders Spain closed out the year in first place, while Germany and Argentina claimed second and third position in the Fifa rankings.

Neighbours Portugal are currently fifth while eternal powerhouse Italy is in seventh place.

Spain rounded off its unbeaten 2014 World Cup qualifying campaign this year — a campaign which saw it collecting 20 out of a possible 24 points.

However it wasn't an unblemished year for the team known as La Roja.

Spain lost the 2013 Confederations Cup final to Brazil 3-0, a result which has cast a doubt on the European's country's chances at the 2014 World Cup, also to be played in Brazil. 

La Roja also lost a friendly to South Africa 1-0, and there was controversy about the team's decision to play another friendly against the politically suspect Equatorial Guinea.  

Meanwhile, the highest climbers of 2013, were the Ukraine who moved up 29 places to 18th after losing only one of twelve games in the last 12 months, although they lost to France in a World Cup play-off in November.

Also getting a pat on the back from Fifa were team USA, currently ranked 14th in the world, and Armenia, who find themselves in 35th position.

At the bottom of the Fifa rankings are Bhutan, San Marino and the Turks and Caicos Islands, all with no points.

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