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Soccer: Italy up one to fourth in FIFA rankings

Prandelli's men progress despite friendly loss to France

Soccer: Italy up one to fourth in FIFA rankings

Paris, December 19 - Italy rose one spot to fourth in the last FIFA standings of the year despite losing their final match of 2012, a friendly, 2-1 to France. Spain led the rankings ahead of Germany and Argentina for the umpteenth month while Brazil fell five slots to 18th. Colombia leaped from 8th to 5th while Netherlands fell one position to 8th and Portugal three to 7th. Here are the end-of-year standings: 1. Spain 2. Germany 3. Argentina 4. Italy (+1) 5. Colombia (+3) 6. England 7. Portugal (-3) 8. Netherlands (-1) 9. Russia 10. Croatia 11. Greece (+1) 12. Switzerland (+4) 13. Ecuador (+4) 14. Cote d'Ivoire (+1) 15. Mexico (-1) 16. Uruguay (-5) 17. France (+1) 18. Brazil (-5) 19. Algeria 20. Sweden (+3)

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