New Delhi: India moved 11 places to the 137th spot in the global football rankings, released on Thursday.
It is India’s highest position since August 2010 when they were similarly positioned, an All India Football Federation (AIFF) statement said.
India defeated 114th ranked Puerto Rico in an international friendly in Mumbai in September, contributing to their rise. India have garnered 230 points.
(Also Read: A longer ISL will help Indian football: ATK’s Doutie)
National coach Stephen Constantine sounded delighted but wasn’t willing to read too much into it.
“When I came over for my second stint, one of my tasks was to improve our FIFA rankings. With the results which we have had so far, it is clear that we have succeeded,” he told www.the-aiff.com.
“It’s been a total team effort. Unless Mr Patel (AIFF President Praful Patel) and Mr Das (AIFF General Secretary Kushal Das) allowed me to do the things and the manner I wanted it to be done, this won’t have been possible ever.”
“But this is just the beginning of the long-term plan which we envisage for Indian football. I am certainly not over the moon as I feel my team can achieve much more,” he added.
India were ranked 171 when Constantine took over for the second time in February 2015 and slipped further to 173 in March 2015.
Constantine won his first game in-charge against Nepal 2-0.
Argentina continues to head the list with 1621 points. Reigning world champions Germany moved up to second behind Argentina, pushing Belgium out of the top three.
Five-time world champions Brazil also moved up a place to third. Belgium went down to the fourth position.
Spain are back in the top 10 pushing Wales to 11th.