A combined men and women’s world ranking

I’m a sucker for an international tournament, so like many I was glued to the TV as the Women’s World Cup filled the summer football void. The World Cup divided opinion on social media into three distinct camps. The first was the misogyny filled moronic opinions, those who weren’t interested and those who loved it. (And to be clear, the latter two are the only correct positions to take on the matter).

For the first time I can remember the English national team exceeded their country’s expectations, finishing the tournament as Europe’s best team. The only drawback for the England side wanting to inspire a nation was that the time difference with Canada meant the games were played deep into the European night. Surely more would have enjoyed the games if they were played at friendlier hours for non-insomniacs.

What has been interesting are the discussions about how the women’s game can grow post-World Cup. Whilst I think it’s often unhelpful to tie women’s football too close to the men’s game, I think doing something on a joint basis may be interesting. Therefore, I propose a new world ranking that ranks every country in the world at how good they are at men’s and women’s football. This world ranking would give us a great indication as to how good a country was at football – rather than how good they are at men’s football – surely two different things.

Current (joint) World Football Rankings

Country followed by women’s ranking/men’s ranking

  1. Germany (2/2)
  2. Brazil (6/6)
  3. England (5/9)
  4. Netherlands (12/5)
  5. France (3/21)
  6. Italy (13/17)
  7. Spain (19/12)
  8. USA (1/34)
  9. Colombia (25/4), Denmark (15/24) & Switzerland (21/18)

[Note: Iceland are currently ranked 18th best women’s side in the world and the 23rd best men’s side. A fantastic achievement for a small country.]

The introduction of such a simple measure would draw attention to the fact that women’s football exists (even admitting that is hard for some fans and media) and would give a small outlet every month to demonstrate the progress of both men’s and women’s teams in a country. It may also bring into focus the bizarre situation we have where the men’s and women’s rankings are calculated using a different method. But that’s a different battle for a different day.