New Delhi: FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke on Wednesday said the ranking system used by the apex body is "very complicated" and his statement has come at a time when the Indian footballers are trying to tell the world that their national team is far better than what their ranking suggests.

"FIFA rankings are a very complicated process, but the rule works. Rankings are based on the number of matches the teams play. To climb the ladder in the rankings you need to play on FIFA dates and with competitive sides," Valcke said, moments after India slipped a place to be 169th in the latest FIFA charts.

Valcke's observation followed England's ascend to the number three spot. Despite failing to reach the semifinal of an international competition since the European Championship in 1996, Roy Hodgson's charges are now behind Germany and world and European champions Spain.

The Indian team has just completed a hat-trick of Nehru Cup triumphs but instead of going up, the country slipped further down.

"India need to play in better tournaments, get more international exposure. We understand (Syed Rahim Nabi's point) that we are better than what our rankings suggest, it can be misleading," AIFF president Praful Patel said while highlighting the India player's statement.

The ranking system used by the world's football governing body has been long mocked.


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