Top 10 Best National Football Teams In Africa [Latest Ranking]

The football governing body, Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), on the 5th of November published her latest ranking of National Teams in 2015.

In the African continent, Ivory Coast topped the latest 2015 list of Best National Football Teams in Africa. Second on the list is Algeria, closely followed by Ghana. Ivory Coast actually swapped places with Algeria to emerge #1. Unfortunately, the Nigerian Super Eagles and the Pharaohs of Egypt who made the last top 10 list lost their places this time around.

Ivory Coast, Algeria, Ghana, Cape Verde Islands and Senegal are the top five teams in Africa in that order. Below is the list in full, with their individual performances that made them outstanding.

Football Team Africa Rank World Rank
Ivory Coast 1 22
Algeria 2 26
Ghana 3 30
Cape Verde Islands 4 32
Senegal 5 39

Read on to get the full gist…

10. Democratic Republic of Congo – The Leopards

DR Congo rounds out the top 10 for Africa while placing a respectable 55th in the world. In this year’s Africa Cup of Nations, DR Congo qualified from their group with 3 points and finished 2nd place in the group behind Tunisia, therefore they advanced to the quarter finals to play against their rivals Republic of Congo and they came from two goals down to win 4-2. However, they were knocked out by Ivory Coast who won 3-1 in the semi finals. They ended up finishing third, beating Equatorial Guinea in penalties, after the third place match went 0-0 in regulation time.

Also See: Top 10 Football Clubs in Africa

PORT ELIZABETH, SOUTH AFRICA - JANUARY 24: DR Congo players line up before the 2013 African Cup of Nations match between Niger and DR Congo at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium on January 24, 2013 in Port Elizabeth, South Africa. (Photo by Richard Huggard/Gallo Images/Getty Images)

9. Guinea – The Elephant National Team

Guinea made remarkable moves in the FIFA rankings this month, with the team breaking into the top 10 African teams to grab the ninth position on the continent. In addition, they jumped two positions in the world from 55th to 53rd, a feat that will definitely be a welcome development for their passionate football fans in the country and around the globe.

In 2012 Guinea beat Botswana 6–1 in the group stage of the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations, becoming the first side to score six goals in an Africa Cup of Nations game since Côte d’Ivoire in 1970.


8. Congo – The Red Devils

Winners of the tournament back in 1972, when they defeated Mali 3-2 in the final. the Congolese were able to maintain their eighth place on the continent, but unfortunately for them, they dropped a further three places to fall out of the top 50 in world ranking.


7. Cameroon – Indomitable Lions

Cameroon qualified for World Cup for the first time in 1982 and it was the first African team to reach the World Cup quarter-final and this affected positively the history of African football because FIFA increased the number of African teams in World Cup. The Indomitable Lions of Cameroon are the greatest African team of all-time in overall history and history of World Cup final tournament, holding the record of most appearances in World Cup with seven, as well as the record most consecutive appearances in World Cup for African teams with four between 1990 and 2002. In 2003, Cameroon became the only African team to reach FIFA confederation cup final match.

They landed 7th in the continental FIFA ranking and 51st place in world ranking declining 3 places from an October overall standing of 48th.


6. Tunisia – Eagles of Carthage

Tunisia played their first international match in 1957. They were first admitted to FIFA and CAF in 1960. The Eagles of Carthage participated first in the AFCON and the FIFA World Cup qualifying round in 1962 tournament and achieved qualifying for the first time and finished third. They won their first AFCON cup in 2004 and participated in World Cup 4 times.

See: Top 20 Most Expensive Sports Stadiums In Africa

Tunisia was the fourth placed African nation in the previous edition of the FIFA ranking, which was released in October. Unfortunately, they dropped to the 6th position in this latest ranking.


5. Senegal

Senegal’s first appearance in the Africa Cup of Nations was in 1965, when Senegal, after finishing second in their group, lost 1–0 to the Ivory Coast to finish in fourth place. Senegal has won the Amilcar Cabral Cup, a regional soccer tournament for West African nations, eight times, more than any other country, with Guinea in second place with five titles.

Senegal was toppled this season by Cape Verde, but they succeeded in moving ahead of Tunisia in the ranking, so they maintained a fifth position in Africa while moving a step down in the overall list to grab the 39th position.


4. Cape Verde Islands – The Blue Sharks

The 2015 squad of the Blue Sharks are quite well-dispersed, with many of them playing in Portugal, France and Romania. The most capped member of the AFCON squad is defender Elvis Manuel Monteiro Macedo, better known as Babanco, who has 40 caps and plays for Estoril in Portugal. Forward Ryan Mendes plays for Lille in France, while Garry Rodrigues is with Elche.

Cape Verde experienced one of their best lucks this month, jumping to fourth position in Africa from a previous sixth spot, overtaking Tunisia and Senegal in the process.


3. Ghana – The Black Stars

The Ghana national football team, popularly nicknamed the Black Stars represents Ghana in international association football and has done so since the 1950’s. Although the team did not qualify for the senior FIFA World Cup until 2006 where they qualified for the FIFA World Cup for the first time, they had qualified for five straight Olympic Games Football Tournaments when the tournament was still a full senior national team competition. The team has won the Africa Cup of Nations four times(in 1963, 1965, 1978, and 1982), and has been runner-up 5 times (in 1968, 1970, 1992, 2010, and 2015).


2. Algeria – The Fennec Foxes/Desert Warriors

Algeria is the first African team to bring the best of footballing, by inspiring the African nations to play without complex. The Desert Warriors suffered a drop of seven positions in this month’s ranking, falling from 19th position overall to 26th. In the continental ranking, they also took a step backward, losing their top spot to rivals Cote D’Ivoire.


1. Cote d’Ivoire – The Elephants

The Elephants first participated in the Africa Cup of nations in 1965 and reached the semi – finals three consecutive times since that year. They entered to play in FIFA World Cup qualification for the first time in 1974. Ivory Coast won the Africa cup of nations two times (1992 and 2015). They first qualified for the World Cup in 2006 and since then they didn’t miss any single World Cup qualification. They lastly participated in 2010 and 2014.

The Elephants #1 in this latest list of best African national teams in the FIFA rankings, having won the year’s African Cup of Nations. Presently, they rank #22 in the FIFA world list of Best Football Teams. However, Stars like Didier Drogba, Kolo Toure and Yaya Toure are all in their thirties and will soon exit from the African Cup of Nations; this could force the Elephants from the top soon.

IZMIR, TURKEY - FEBRUARY 11: The Ivory Coast team pose for a group photo during the International Friendly match between Turkey and the Ivory Coast at the Izmir Ataturk Stadium on February 11, 2009 in Izmir, Turkey. (Photo by Jamie McDonald/Getty Images)