Malaysia’s recent 3-1 aggregate defeat to Thailand in the 2012 AFF Suzuki Cup semifinals did not stop the national team from moving up the official world rankings.
Based on the rankings list of the game’s world governing body FIFA, Datuk K. Rajagopal’s team climbed up five rungs to finish the year in 158th position. Their previous position was 163.
Among the ASEAN countries, the Malayan Tigers are ranked sixth, behind Vietnam (131), Thailand (136), the Philippines (147), Singapore (154) and Indonesia 9 (156). In Asia, Malaysia rose one spot to finish 26th out of 46 countries.
The national team started the year in 148th position before slumping to their worst placing in 2012 last month.
World and European champions Spain continued their stay at the top, followed by Germany and Argentina. Euro 2012 runners-up Italy and South America’s Colombia make up the top 5.