By Samuel Gacharira,
After an entertaining FIFA international break, which saw the commencement of Euro and Afcon qualifiers proper amid international friendly matches, the FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking were released . We take a look how teams from East Africa faired and the decline .
The downspiral in FIFA rankings for East African countries has major implication in the dreams harboured by so many footballers who seek to move to Europe for greener pastures.The future looks if rules that have been proposed by the likes of English FA to rid out what they refer as “Mediocore”players by putting a limit of only the top 50 ranked teams could have their players traded .
Its time for East Africa to pull up its self if at all the many footballers will achieve their dreams or it will just be another pipe dream.
The Cranes of Uganda have made a remarkable improvement climbing 2 places to occupy position 79 with 418 points. They are the highest ranked in the region. This can be attributed to the fine form in the Afcon qualifiers where they top Group E with 4 points following a 1-1 draw in Kumasi against Ghana and a 2-0 home win against Guinea.
Despite the decision by CAF to withdraw them from Group A of the Afcon qualifiers, Rwanda have improved by 8 positions to position 93.This can be attributed to the fine run of APR football club in the recently concluded Cecafa Kagame Club Championships that saw them finish in second position. The fine run in the pre-qualifiers also had a positive effect on their ranking. The Amavubi Stars are the second best placed team in the region.
The Harambee Stars have had a rough patch this past month. The elimination by Lesotho in the pre qualifiers coupled by the 1-0 loss to Egypt in Aswan have dimmed the Stars. This has condemned them to a freefall that sees them drop by 7 places to position 111.Gor Mahia`s (Kenya`s sole representative) early exit from the Cecafa Kagame Club Championships has also contributed to the big slump.
Tanzania will blame their 4-3 aggregate loss to Mozambique in the pre-qualifying round for the decline in the ranking by 5 places. This sees them occupy position 115.
Not even the best of pessimists would pre-empt that Ethiopia would be bottom of Group B with the kind of quality preparations that they had. Having played two games and lost both though narrowly, they have zero points. This poor start to their qualifying campaign has had a negative effect on their ranking and they lie at position 132 having dropped by 20 places.
Neither have Sudan performed well in the Afcon qualifiers nor have they improved in their ranking. They occupy position 133 from the previous 115.Two losses to South Africa and Congo leaves them bottom of Group A after two rounds of matches. This has diluted the successful run that saw El Merreikh crowned Cecafa Kagame Club Championships champions.
Burundi, South Sudan, Eritrea and Somalia have been inactive at national team level in the past month. They occupy positions 130,185,202 and 204 respectively.