A DISASTROUS EURO 2012 campaign has seen Ireland plummet eight places to 26th in the latest FIFA World Rankings.
Giovanni Trapattoni’s side were beaten off the park without a single point in Poland, scoring one and conceding nine as they were the first team to be eliminated from this summer’s showpiece.
Ireland’s slide from 18th was the worst of any of the 16 teams at Euro 2012. Holland, who were also beaten in all three of their group games, dropped four places from fourth to eighth.
Spain remain the world’s top-ranked side following their third successive win at a major tournament while beaten finalists Italy, another of Ireland’s Group C opponents, jump up six places from 12th to sixth.
Croatia, who dashed Irish hopes with a 3-1 win in Poznan, drop one place from ninth to 10th.
Germany are second, Uruguay third, England move up to two places to fourth while Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo-inspired run to the semi-finals sees them move up five places to fifth.
Of Ireland’s other opponents on the road to Rio, Sweden remain in 17th, Austria are down two places to 60th, Kazakhstan are down six places to 147th while the Faroe Islands suffered the biggest drop of any country in the rankings, falling 33 places to 155th.