Football Rankings: In Search of Fairness

Nothing is so fallacious as facts, except figures. George Canning

Pondering over official football rankings you eventually come to the point that they make no sense for avid fans. They only make sense for FIFA itself. That sense is, however, akin to benefit music CD vendors reap from classifying music into rock, pop, disco etc., as it makes it easier to sell the discs and increases the profit. Official football rankings are aimed exactly at gaining profit from competitions not allowing strong and prominent teams to encounter early in the tournament.

Unofficial rankings are much more intriguing but none of them will say that Team A is stronger than Team B and that is their principal advantage. If rankings counted for so much, football would be dull and unpopular. The Danish and Greek national teams would have never won the UEFA European Championship trophy, FC Zenit Saint Petersburg would have never become the UEFA Cup champion and it wouldn’t have made sense for Getafe to struggle against Real Madrid.But everything is quite the other way as there is always a room for temper, fortune and circumstance.

Every ranking has its purpose and objectives. Success, accuracy and fairness of football classifications should depend on accomplishment of these objectives.

World-famous ranking systems:

1. The FIFA WorldRanking. It is an official ranking in association football. The team gains a certain point for every game played. The quantity of points is not stable and depends on myriad of circumstances. For instance, the team gains more points if the opponent is considerably stronger. The calculation is based on results for the last four years. All the friendly games, continental championship games and World Cup matches are included into the calculation. And of course, it is one thing to win in a friendly and it’s totally another to pass flying colours in a World Cup game. So, the more significant a match, the more points gets a team.

Drawbacks: unjustifiably high coefficients of the Confederations Cup (3.0), continental championships (2.5) and FIFA World Cup (4.0). Thus, for instance, in the AFC Asian Cup the Japan national team can easily gain a lot of points on matches with Kyrgyzstan or Bahrain meanwhile Russia, Slovakia, Ireland and Armenia will struggle in one qualifying group. It is obvious that competition among teams in Europe is much higher than in Asia, Africa and even in both Americas.

2. The UEFA coefficients. Its main difference from FIFA rankings is that the goals scored and the goals missed are calculated. It seems to be fairer a system while seeding the teams. เว็บพนัน แจกเงิน

Drawbacks: friendly matches are not considered by the system. It doesn’t allow to monitor the progress of the team and as a result the qualifying groups are rather equal.

3. The World Football Elo Ratings is an unofficial ranking system. It is based upon the Elo chess rating system but the calculation is modified and takes into account a large number of factors. The ranking is aimed to give mostly mathematical data.

Drawbacks: the formula contains the so-called expected outcome akin to that bookmakers give. But it is controversial as any continental or intercontinental tournament has a rank of 50 (the higher rank is only peculiar of FIFA World Cup finals).

4. The Unofficial Football World Championships. This is a joky way to determine the world championsimilar to that used in boxing. Its principal is that the team which beat a champion becomes a champion. It was created by the Scots who won over the 1966 champions – England.The system makes no pretense to seriousness and fairness, and according to its calculation Georgia and Zimbabwe have already been world champions and England is a reigning champion.

5. Public football rankings indicates popularity of one or another player, club, national team or coach among fans. It reflects tastes and sympathies of football fans. If the top player according to the FIFA World ranking is determined by a vogue group of pundits, then according to public ranking simple football fans do that. The unique public ranking portal is a sort of know-how project as up to date millions, or even billions of people lacked the possibility to choose the best football player or team.



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