Tunisia's Naim Sliti celebrates after beating Panama at the 2018 World Cup in Russia. Photo: REUTERS/Murad Seze

JOHANNESBURG - Tunisia became the outright top-ranked African football nation again when FIFA released the September listings on Thursday. The north Africans shared first place with Senegal last month, but a 2-0 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifying win in eSwatini (formerly Swaziland) lifted them one place in the world to 23rd.

Senegal dropped one position to second in Africa and 25th in the world after twice surrendering the lead in a 2-2 away draw against Madagascar in the same competition. Among the African top 10, four-time Cup of Nations title-holders Ghana were the biggest losers, slipping three places to seventh after a 1-0 away defeat by Kenya.

Kenya, who followed up the Cup of Nations victory over Ghana with a friendly win against Malawi, lie 27th in Africa. Cape Verde dropped out of the top 10 after drawing 1-1 in lowly Lesotho and were replaced by record seven-time African champions Egypt, who thrashed Niger 6-0 this month. Bafana Bafana have not managed to crack Africa's top ten, but moved up one place to 15th after a goalless draw against Libya in an Afcon qualifier.

Meanwhile, the top spot in the worldwide rankings have been shared fpr the first time in the table's 25-year history with Belgium joining world champions France as the joint leaders.

Roberto Martinez's Belgium collected two wins, including their first in the UEFA Nations League over Iceland earlier this month, to bring them level with France on 1729 points. France, meanwhile, were held to a goalless draw by Germany in Munich in their Nations League opener before beating the Netherlands 2-1.

The only other change in the top 10 saw Denmark slip down to 10th spot, below Spain. Following their disappointing group-stage exit at the World Cup, Germany have climbed a further three positions and now sit 12th.

Kenya were the biggest movers overall as they earned 22 points to move up five places to 107th. Those points came courtesy of a 1-0 victory over Ghana in an Afcon qualifier.

Africa top 10 (world ranking in brackets)

  1. Tunisia (23),
  2. Senegal (25)
  3. Democratic Republic of Congo (40)
  4. Morocco (45)
  5. Nigeria (48)
  6. Cameroon (50)
  7. Ghana (51)
  8. Burkina Faso (56)
  9. Mali (63)
  10. Egypt (64)

Top 10 rankings:

  1. France and Belgium

  2. Brazil
  3. Croatia
  4. Uruguay
  5. England
  6. Portugal
  7. Switzerland
  8. Spain
  9. Denmark


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