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India football team records lowest FIFA rankings in last seven years; Igor Stimac to remain in charge

After a point-and-goalless AFC Asian Cup campaign, the Blue Tigers failed to win in two FIFA World Cup 2026 qualifiers against Afghanistan last month. India dropped 15 places to 116 after the Asian Cup and further slipped in the latest FIFA men's rankings on Thursday.

Sumeet Kavthale Written By: Sumeet Kavthale @sumeetkavthale New Delhi Updated on: April 04, 2024 18:14 IST
Igor Stimac and Sunil Chhetri
Image Source : AIFF/X Igor Stimac and Sunil Chhetri during the FIFA WC Qualifier against Afghanistan in March 2024

India men's football team further slipped in the latest FIFA rankings on Thursday, April 4. After a poor display against Afghanistan in the latest FIFA World Cup 2026 qualifiers last month, India dropped to 121 positions in the FIFA standings, their lowest ranking in the last seven years and under head coach Igor Stimac.

Low-ranked Afghanistan pulled off a shocking 1-2 win against India at Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium in Guwahati and registered a 0-0 in a home leg. India still remain alive in the hunt for the World Cup qualifiers' round three qualification with two games in hand.

India lost 15 places after their disastrous AFC Asian Cup 2024 campaign in January where they failed to register a single goal or point in three group-stage matches. India lost four points in the latest rankings released by FIFA after a shocking display in two international games in the March window. 

India's 121 ranking is their lowest in the last seven years, adding further pressure on head coach Igor Stimac. The Croatian manager is facing a lot of criticism for the Indian football team's downfall in recent months but is reportedly expected to remain in charge for the remaining two World Cup qualifiers round two fixtures in June.

On Tuesday, All India Football Federation (AIFF) holds a crisis talk with Igor Stimac after India's surprise loss to Afghanistan. 

"I am happy that we had a good discussion with the head coach," M Vijayan, AIFF's executive committee member said. "In the World Cup qualifiers, we have two matches in hand with a chance to make Round 3 for the first time in history. It is time we focussed on the next two matches and stayed solidly behind the national team so that they could do their best."

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