BEIJING, July 17 (Xinhua) -- Four-time world champions Germany charged back to the top of FIFA world rankings for the first time in about 20 years following their World Cup victory.
Germany moved up one slot to lead the field following their 1-0 win over Argentina in the World Cup final in Brazil on Sunday, according to world soccer governing body FIFA's latest rankings released on Thursday.
Argentina followed in second and the Netherlands stood in third. The Oranje's third-place finish at the World Cup has propelled them 12 positions up the table and back into the top ten.
All of the teams that exited the World Cup in the quarter-finals have climbed up the ranking: Colombia (fourth, up four), Belgium (fifth, up six), France (tenth, up seven) and Costa Rica (16th, up 12 - the Ticos' highest-ever ranking).
If the winners have gained, the less successful teams are left counting the cost of failure in their ranking positions. Former champions Spain have fallen from the top spot to eighth place, while Portugal (11th, down seven), Italy (14th, down five) and England (20th, down ten) have all dropped out of the top ten following their first-round exits. World Cup hosts Brazil, meanwhile, have dropped four places to seventh position.