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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Soccer: Brazil takes top ranking into World Cup; Spain 2nd

Associated Press

ZURICH Brazil will head to the World Cup as the top team, according to the latest FIFA rankings.

The five-time world champions retained the top spot ahead of European champion Spain in Wednesday's release of the final monthly rankings before the June 11 World Cup kickoff.

The United States at No. 14 heads the three World Cup qualifiers from CONCACAF.

Portugal is third followed by the Netherlands and world champion Italy. Germany is sixth, edging Argentina and England.

France moves up one to No. 9, trading places with Croatia which did not qualify for the World Cup.

Cameroon at No. 19 is best of the six African World Cup teams, and No. 20 Australia leads Asia's four qualifiers.

Host South Africa is No. 83, and No. 105 North Korea is the lowest-ranked qualifier.