I’ll take any excuse to post about football.

Fifa, football’s world controlling body, announced the latest rankings for world football this week.

Not surprising are the top five nations: Spain, Netherlands, Germany, Uruguay and Portugal.

We of course care about the African rankings.

The African teams in the top 50 are: Cote d’Ivoire (no. 16, down one place) followed by Egypt (36th, down 2 places), Ghana (37th, down 1), Burkina Faso (41th, down 1), Senegal (42nd, up 7), Nigeria (43rd, down 5), Algeria (46th) and Cameroon (48th).

My team, South Africa, is just outside the top 50: they’re 51st, down 4 places. (Didn’t they draw and beat Egypt in recent African Nations Cup qualifiers eliminating the 6-time continental champions from next year’s finals?)

Sierra Leone (now 68th, up 24), Togo (95th, up 26) and Namibia (119th, up 24) are three of the six teams outside the top 50 who improved their position on the rankings by more than 20 places.

Sources: Here and here.

Further Reading

History time

The historical novel is in vogue across the continent, challenging how we conceive of the nation, and how we write its histories.

A worthy ancestor

The world is out of joint and Immanuel Wallerstein, one of its great public intellectuals, has left us—albeit with tools to battle the dying kicks of capitalism.