The FIFA World Cup all-time table: Brazil 1st, England above Spain…

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Ronaldinho celebrates victory in the 2002 World Cup final between Brazil and Germany at Yokohama Stadium, Yokohama, Japan, June 2002.

From the first tournament in 1930, to the last edition in 2018, the FIFA World Cup has grown from into the biggest sporting competition on the planet with billions of people expected to tune in for Qatar 2022. But who are the most successful sides in World Cup history?

It won’t surprise anybody to see five-time winners Brazil at the top of our list but Germany, who have lifted the trophy four times and reached another four finals, aren’t too far behind them.

Italy are next, despite not having qualified since 2014, and will probably be overtaken by Argentina this year.

France have been Europe’s most successful side since 1998 – two victories and one runner-up finish – to overtake the likes of England and Spain.

Historic World Cup countries that won’t be in Qatar include Sweden, Russia, Hungary (who haven’t played in the finals since 1986) and the Czech Republic, while Canada (zero points and goals) are the lowest-ranked team in this year’s tournament.

We’ve crunched the numbers from every World Cup to present the all-time table.

The system used in the World Cup up to 1990 was two points for a win. In this ranking, three points are awarded for a win, one for a draw and zero for a loss. Penalty shoot-outs are listed as three points for the winning team and zero points for the losing team.

Germany’s results include those of West Germany, Yugoslavia’s come under Serbia while Czechoslovakia’s result are included with the Czech Republic’s. Indonesia competed as the Dutch East Indies in 1938 and Congo DR competed as Zaire in 1974.

A team in bold will participate in the 2022 World Cup finals. 

1. Brazil – 242 points

2. Germany – 229 points

3. Italy – 155 points

4. Argentina – 151 points

5. France – 117 points

6. England – 107 points

7. Spain – 104 points

8. Netherlands – 93 points

9. Uruguay – 86 points

10. Sweden – 72 points

11. Belgium – 71 points

12. Russia – 68 points

13. Serbia – 61 points

14. Mexico – 60 points

15. Poland – 53 points

16. Portugal – 50 points 

17. Hungary – 48 points

18. Switzerland – 43 points

19. Croatia – 41 points (GD: +9)

20. Czech Republic – 41 points (GD: -2)

21. Austria – 40 points

22. Chile – 39 points

23. Paraguay – 33 points

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Paraguayan Roque Santa Cruz celebrates his match-winning goal against Peru in their third Copa America match. Paraguay won 1-0. Asuncion, Paraguay, July 5 1999.

READ: 8 players from World Cup 2002 we can’t believe are still playing in 2022

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24. Denmark – 31 points

25. United States – 30 points (GD: -25)

26. Colombia – 29 points (GD: +2)

27. South Korea – 29 points (GD: -36)

28. Romania – 27 points

29. Nigeria – 21 points (GD: -7)

30. Costa Rica – 21 points (GD: -9)

31. Japan – 19 points (GD: -9)

32. Scotland – 19 points (GD: -16)

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Scotland's John Collins converts his penalty against Brazil at Stade de France, Paris, June 1998.

READ: Kilt mishaps, frit Brazilians & red, red wine: Scotland’s World Cup 98 story

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33. Cameroon – 19 points (GD: -25)

34. Bulgaria – 19 points (GD: -31)

35. Peru – 18 points

36. Turkey – 16 points

37. Republic of Ireland – 15 points

38. Ghana – 14 points (GD: -3)

39. Northern Ireland – 14 points (GD: -10)

40. Ecuador – 13 points

41. Senegal – 12 points (GD: +1)

42. Algeria – 12 points (GD: -6)

43. Morocco – 11 points (GD: -8)

44. Saudi Arabia – 11 points (GD: -28)

45. Ivory Coast – 10 points (GD: -1)

46. South Africa – 10 points (GD: -5)

47. Tunisia – 10 points (GD: -12) 

48. Iran – 10 points (GD: -15)

49. Australia – 10 points (GD: -18)

50. Norway – 9 points (GD: -1)

51. Ukraine – 9 points (GD: -2)

52. East Germany – 8 points

53. Greece – 7 points

54. Wales – 6 points 

55. Slovakia – 4 points (GD: -2)

56. Slovenia – 4 points (GD: -5)

57. Cuba – 4 points (GD: -7)

58. North Korea – 4 points (GD: -15)

59. Bosnia & Herzegovina – 3 points (GD: 0)

60. Jamaica – 3 points (GD: -6)

61. New Zealand – 3 points (GD: -10)

62. Honduras – 3 points (GD: -11)

63. Angola – 2 points (GD: -1)

64. Israel – 2 points (GD: -2)

65. Egypt – 2 points (GD: -7)

66. Iceland – 1 point (GD: -3)

67. Kuwait – 1 point (GD: -4, Goals Scored: 2)

68. Trinidad & Tobago – 1 point (GD: -4, Goals Scored: 0)

69. Bolivia – 1 point (GD: -19)

70. Iraq – 0 points

71. Togo – 0 points (GD: -5, Goals Scored: 1)

72. Canada – 0 points (GD: -5, Goals Scored: 0)

73. Indonesia – 0 points (GD: -6)

74. Panama – 0 points (GD: -9, Goals Scored: 2)

75. United Arab Emirates – 0 points (GD: -9, Goals Scored: 2)

76. China – 0 points (GD: -9, Goals Scored: 0)

77. Haiti – 0 points (GD: -12)

78. Congo DR – 0 points (GD: -14)

79. El Salvador – 0 points (GD: -21)


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