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Where does Burma stand in new football world rankings?

Burmese players celebrate their first goal against Indonesia in the SEA Games 2015. (PHOTO: Lawrence Tan/SINGSOC)

The Burmese men’s national team has gone up one place to 160 in the FIFA world football rankings, recently updated following the UEFA championships and Copa America.

According to the world rankings, Argentina remains the strongest team, followed by Belgium, Colombia, Germany and Chile.

At 160, Burma sits sandwiched between Grenada and New Caledonia. Burma’s Southeast Asian rivals Thailand are currently ranked at 121, while Vietnam is 139, and China 81.

Coached by German Gerd Zeise, on 6 June Burma pulled off a 3-0 win in a friendly match against Hong Kong, though three days earlier they lost 1-0 to Singapore. Both games were played at the team’s national Thuwunna Stadium in Rangoon.

Burma failed to qualify for the next stage of the 2018 World Cup, finishing fourth out of five in Asia’s group G behind South Korea, Lebanon and Kuwait.

But it’s a rosier picture for the Burmese women’s national team. They remain relatively highly ranked at 44, behind Serbia at 43 and Uzbekistan at 41. The USA is the No 1 women’s football team in the world, according to the standings.

The Burmese men’s team was dominant in Asia in the 1960s and 1970s, winning the Asian Games twice, in 1966 and 1970. It also won the Southeast Asian Games five successive times between 1965 and 1973.