Over the first few weeks of September, qualifying matches for the 2014 World Cup dominated the world of football. With just a few matches played by each team, the fixtures whetted the appetites of fans as they looked forward to the final tournament in Brazil.
So who should we expect to see in Brazil? And just how good is every team?
These are questions that FIFA has looked to constantly respond to with their ranking system. The idea is sound: provide a running point system (a la rankings in tennis) that evaluates teams' performances and rank them based on the output.
However, there is a problem: FIFA seems to have a flawed system that they refuse to alter in any way.
In some regards, this is an understandable problem. After all, when you make a system like this, it is hard to take every possible nuance into consideration. Hence, while the system you create may be sound given the situation in which you created it, it may falter under a different circumstance.
However, having England as the third best team in the world seems a bit ridiculous.
As a result, I have undertaken the task of creating my own ranking system. It has the same idea as the FIFA system in that the teams are given a mathematical number to evaluate the merit of their results.
However, I completely rebuilt their formula and believe that, as a result, I came up with a better system.
In this system, each team is evaluated in each match based on the result, whether they were home, away or neutral, the level of opponent and the importance of the match. Given all of their match totals, I tally a score out of 1000 from which I rank the teams.
So without further ado, here are the rankings of every national football team.