IRELAND HAVE FALLEN 15 places in FIFA’s world rankings after defeats to Sweden and Austria over the past week.
After a 2-1 loss in Dublin, the Boys in Green saw their hopes of qualifying for next year’s World Cup finals dashed thanks to David Alaba’s late goal in Vienna on Tuesday night.
The results have seen Giovanni Trapattoni’s five-year reign come to an end while Ireland are down to 59th place in the world governing body’s latest table, released this afternoon.
It is the country’s lowest position since the rankings system was started in 1993.
Elsewhere, England continued to slide down the list despite collecting four points from their last two World Cup qualifiers.
Reigning European and world champions Spain remain in first place, with Argentina – who this week clinched qualification for next year’s World Cup in Brazil – up to second ahead of Germany.
Italy and Colombia complete the top five, but Belgium have climbed four places to sixth this month.
Marc Wilmots’ side are on the verge of qualifying for next year’s World Cup, having failed to reach a major tournament finals since the 2002 World Cup in Japan and South Korea.
It is the continuation of a stunning rise for a nation who were down in 53rd place in August last year.
England’s ranking of 17th is their lowest since 2001, but they were not the only nation to slide down the list.
Bosnia-Herzegovina dropped five places to 18th and the Netherlands slid four to ninth, despite this week qualifying for the World Cup finals.
Meanwhile, Northern Ireland rocketed up 23 places to 86th, despite a midweek loss away to the minnows of Luxembourg.
Additional reporting from © AFP 2013