FIFA Women's World Rankings
|Top 20 rankings as of 20 August 2021|
|*Change from 25 June 2021|
|Complete rankings at FIFA.com|
The FIFA Women's World Rankings for football were introduced in 2003, with the first rankings published on 16 July of that year, as a follow-on to the existing Men's FIFA World Rankings. They attempt to compare the strength of internationally active women's national teams at any given time.
Specifics of the ranking systemEdit
- FIFA Women's World Rankings are based on every international match a team ever played, dating back to 1971, the first FIFA-recognized women's international between France and the Netherlands.
- FIFA Women's World Rankings are implicitly weighted to emphasize recent results.
- FIFA Women's World Rankings are only published four times a year. Normally, rankings are released in March, June, September and December. (In World Cup years, dates may be adjusted to reflect the World Cup results.)
The first two points result from the FIFA Women's World Rankings system being based on the Elo rating system adjusted for football; in 2018, FIFA modified the men's ranking system to similarly be based on Elo systems after continued criticism. FIFA considers the ratings for teams with fewer than 5 matches provisional and at the end of the list. In addition, any team that plays no matches for 4 years becomes unranked; this inactivity limit was previously 18 months, but was extended in early 2021 (after the COVID-19 pandemic stifled a significant amount of international play).
To date the United States and Germany have been the only two teams to lead the women's rankings. They have also held the top two spots in all but six releases, when Germany was ranked third: Norway was in second position in the first two rankings until Germany overtook them by winning the 2003 FIFA Women's World Cup, Brazil was ranked second in March and June 2009 until Germany won 2009 Euro and rejoined the top two, England reached the second ranking in March 2018, and Sweden passed Germany in August 2021 after the Tokyo Olympics.
The United States holds the record for the longest consecutive period leading the rankings of nearly 7 years, from March 2008 to December 2014. As of early March 2020, the United States has led for a total of 12 years, Germany for 4½ years, and the two jointly led for ¼ year.
The rankings are based on the following formulae:
|= The team rating after the match|
|= The team rating before the match|
|= , the weighted importance of the match|
|= The actual result of the match, see below|
|= The expected result of the match|
|= The scaled difference in rating points between the teams|
|= The opposing team's rating before the match|
|= The "home advantage" correction, see below|
|= A scaling factor, see below|
|= The "Match Importance Factor", see below|
The average points of all teams are about 1300 points. The top nations usually exceed 2000 points. In order to be ranked, a team must have played at least 5 matches against officially ranked teams, and have not been inactive for more than 18 months. Even if teams are not officially ranked, their points rating is kept constant until they play their next match.
Actual result of the matchEdit
The main component of the actual result is whether the team wins, loses, or draws, but goal difference is also taken into account.
If the match results in a winner and loser, the loser is awarded a percentage given by the accompanying table, with the result always less than or equal to 20% (for goal differences greater than zero). The result is based on the goal difference and the number of goals they scored. The remaining percentage points are awarded to the winner. For example, a 2–1 match has the result awarded 84%–16% respectively, a 4–3 match has the result awarded 82%–18%, and an 8–3 match has the result awarded 96.2%–3.8%. As such, it is possible for a team to lose points even if they win a match, assuming they did not "win by enough".
If the match ends in a draw the teams are awarded the same result, but the number depends on the goals scored so the results will not necessarily add up to 100%. For example, a 0–0 draws earns both teams 47% each, a 1–1 draw earns 50% each, and a 4–4 draw earns 52.5% each.
Actual result tableEdit
by non winning team
|Actual result (percentage)|
|0||47.0 / 47.0||85.0 / 15.0||92.0 / 8.0||96.0 / 4.0||97.0 / 3.0||98.0 / 2.0||99.0 / 1.0|
|1||50.0 / 50.0||84.0 / 16.0||91.1 / 8.9||95.2 / 4.8||96.3 / 3.7||97.4 / 2.6||98.5 / 1.5|
|2||51.0 / 51.0||83.0 / 17.0||90.2 / 9.8||94.4 / 5.6||95.6 / 4.4||96.8 / 3.2||98.0 / 2.0|
|3||52.0 / 52.0||82.0 / 18.0||89.3 / 10.7||93.6 / 6.4||94.9 / 5.1||96.2 / 3.8||97.5 / 2.5|
|4||52.5 / 52.5||81.0 / 19.0||88.4 / 11.6||92.8 / 7.2||94.2 / 5.8||95.6 / 4.4||97.0 / 3.0|
|5||53.0 / 53.0||80.0 / 20.0||87.5 / 12.5||92.0 / 8.0||93.5 / 6.5||95.0 / 5.0||96.5 / 3.5|
Neutral ground or Home vs. AwayEdit
Historically, home teams earn 66% of the points available to them, with away teams earning the other 34%. To account for this, when two teams are not playing on neutral ground, the home team has its inflated by 100 points for the purposes of calculation. That is, if two equally ranked teams playing at one team's home ground, the home team would be expected to win at the same rate a team playing on neutral ground with a 100-point advantage. This 100 point difference corresponds to a 64%–36% advantage in terms of expected result. The scaling factor remains the same (c=200).
Importance of the matchEdit
|Match importance||Match importance
|FIFA Women's World Cup match||4||60|
|Women's Olympic football tournament||4||60|
|FIFA Women's World Cup qualifier||3||45|
|Women's Olympic football qualifier||3||45|
|Women's Continental finals match||3||45|
|Women's Continental qualifier||2||30|
|Women's friendly match between two Top 10 teams||2||30|
|Women's friendly match||1||15|
Team of the YearEdit
Team of the Year is awarded to the team that finishes top of the FIFA Women's World Rankings. As of 2020, the United States leads the all-time 1st finishes by the end of the year with 12. The United States is also the current year-end holder since 2015. Germany holds the other 6 1st year-end finishes in the 18-year history of this ranking.
Rankings are published four times a year, usually on a Friday.
- "The FIFA/Coca-Cola Women's World Ranking". FIFA. 20 August 2021. Retrieved 20 August 2021.
- "Fact Sheet, FIFA Women's World Ranking" (PDF). FIFA. Archived from the original (PDF) on 11 April 2012. Retrieved 8 June 2015.
- "FIFA launches Women's World Ranking". FIFA.com. Fédération Internationale de Football Association. 16 July 2003. Retrieved 6 February 2020.
- "U.S. tops first women's world soccer rankings". The Honolulu Advertiser. Associated Press. 17 July 2003. p. D5. Retrieved 6 July 2019 – via Newspapers.com.
- "Women's Ranking Procedure". FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking. FIFA. Retrieved 11 January 2018.
- The FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking