Host nation Russia to start SWC as lowest-ranked team

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Zurich – Host nation Russia will kick-off the 2018 Soccer World Cup as the lowest-ranked of the 32 teams in the tournament.

In the latest released FIFA world rankings, Russia dropped four places to 70th, below Saudi Arabia at 67th.

The two lowest-ranked teams at the World Cup will meet in the opening clash at the Luzhniki Stadium next Thursday, June 14.

Defending champion Germany (1st) retained their lead over Brazil, Belgium, Portugal and Argentina in an unchanged top five.

Meanwhile, tournament favourites Spain dropped two places to 10th place.

Chile (9th) is ranked the highest of the teams not participating at the World Cup while non-qualifiers the Netherlands, Wales and Italy complete the top 20.

Mexico is the top CONCACAF nation at 15th, while Tunisia is Africa’s best ranked 21st.

FIFA World Rankings (2018 Soccer World Cup teams only):

1. Germany

2. Brazil

3. Belgium

4. Portugal

5. Argentina

6. Switzerland

7. France

8. Poland

10. Spain

11. Peru

12. Denmark

13. England

14. Uruguay

15. Mexico

16. Colombia

20. Croatia

21. Tunisia

22. Iceland

24. Sweden

27. Senegal

34. Serbia

36. Australia

37. Iran

38. Turkey

41. Morocco

45. Egypt

48. Nigeria

55. Panama

57. Korea Republic

61. Japan

67. Saudi Arabia

70. Russia

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