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MOSCOW, June 1. /TASS/. Team Russia has tumbled from 61st to its worst-ever 63rd place in the ranking compiled by the International Federation of Football Associations (FIFA). According to the figures published on the FIFA website, as of now, the team has gained 561 points.
In November 2016, Team Russia plunged to the 55th place setting its second worst record, from its previous low of 40th place in 1998. In December 2016, Team Russia creeped one position up but in February 2017 it backslid five positions landing at 61st place.
The reason behind the nosedive in the ranking is that being the host country, Team Russia is not participating in the qualifying round of the 2018 FIFA World Cup, while official matches provide more points than friendlies. The FIFA ranking is based on all matches played by teams, both official and friendly.
Team Russia was beset with an unlucky streak at the 2016 European Championships, failing to enter the play-off stage. After the tournament, the team played seven friendly matches. The first with Turkey on August 31 ended in a draw (0:0). Yet, on September 6, the team scored a win against Ghana (1:0), but lost to Costa-Rica on October 9 (3:4), and to Qatar on November 10 (1:2). Russia then garnered a victory over Romania on November 15 (1:0), but lost to Ivory Coast on March 24 (0:2). The meet with Belgium on March 28 ended in a draw (3:3).
FIFA’s top three spots are still occupied by Brazil (1,715 points), Argentina (1,626 points) and Germany (1,464 points).