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Wihdat improve, Faisali drop in Club World Ranking

By Aline Bannayan - Feb 05,2013 - Last updated at Feb 05,2013

AMMAN — Wihdat climbed 22 spots to 343rd while Faisali dropped 41 places to 391st in International Federation of Football History and Statistics (IFFHS) ranking issued on Tuesday.

Jordanian teams are still out of the top 300 this month, but Faisali and Wihdat are in the top 20 Asian clubs.

Spain’s FC Barcelona top the IFFHS list, followed by compatriot Atletico Madrid, England’s Chelsea FC, Argentina’s Boca Juniors Buenos Aires, Germany’s Bayern Munich, Brazil’s Corinthians São Paulo, Spain’s Real Madrid, France’s Olympique Lyon, Germany’s Borussia Dortmund and Chile’s Universidad de Chile Santiago.

Jordanian teams are still out of the top 10 Asian and Arab clubs.

Arab teams are led by Tunisia’s Esperance in 68th spot, followed by Sudan’s Hilal Umdurman (77) and Marrikh Umdurman (92), Saudi Arabia’s Hilal (122) and Ittihad (127), Kuwait’s Al Kuwait (139), Saudi Arabia’s Ahli Jeddah (143), Morocco’s Wydad Casablanca (149), the UAE’s Al Jazeera Abu Dhabi (162) and Iraq’s Erbil Sport Club (195).

East Asian teams continue to dominate Asian clubs. South Korea’s Ulsan Hyundai Horangi FC are in the top spot in 30th place, followed by compatriots FC Pohang Steelers (65) and Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors (108), Japan’s Kashiwa Reysol (109), Uzbekistan’s Bunyodkor Tashkent (116), China’s Guangzhou Evergrande FC (119), Saudi Arabia’s Ittihad (127), Iran’s Esteghlal (128), Kuwait’s Al Kuwait (139) and Saudi Arabia’s Ahli Jeddah (143).

Apart from the local competitions, Jordanian teams have been inactive on the Asian scene as both Wihdat and Faisali were eliminated from the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Cup last season. For the upcoming season, Ramtha and Faisali kick off their 2013 AFC Cup matches on March 6 in two tough groups hoping Jordanian teams can again make it to the finals of the second-tier Asian club competition, which was won by Faisali in 2005 and 2006 and Shabab Urdun in 2007.

In the upcoming AFC Cup edition, 32 teams will play in eight groups with the top two in each group going on to the Round of 16. Faisali were drawn in Group C alongside Iraq’s Duhok, Yemen’s Shaab Ibb, Oman’s Dhofar. Ramtha, who will play in the AFC Cup for the first time, were drawn in Group D with Kuwait’s Qadissieh, Syria’s Shurta and Tajikistan’s Rafshan.

Wihdat are tussling for the Jordan Professional League’s lead with Shabab Urdun. Last season, Wihdat only managed to retain the Cup Winner’s Cup, after they won all four local titles in the preceding season, in a repeat of their historic 2008/09 feat.

Faisali this season won the Cup Winners’ Cup and have been struggling in the league. Last season, they won the league, Jordan Cup and Jordan Football Association Shield.

On the Arab scene, Baqaa, last season’s fourth-placed league team, will play in the inaugural Arab Football Association Cup Round 3 after they eliminated Shaab Ibb in Round 2 on aggregate — losing 1-0 before winning 3-0. Shabab Urdun was eliminated on aggregate following their draw with Bahrain’s Al Hadd 1-1 and 0-0 in Round 1.

In Round 3, Baqaa have a tough encounter with Algeria’s Ittihad while Saudi Arabia’s Nasr play Kuwait’s Arabi, Iraq’s Air Force take on Morocco’s Raja Casablanca, and Algeria’s Shabab Bluzdad go up against Egypt’s Ismaili. Two teams qualify from Asia and two from Africa to Round 4.

Initiated in 1991, the Club World Ranking is a classification showing the level of the clubs and the level of international performance for each country. Competitions not organised by a continental confederation, or any intercontinental events not recognised by FIFA, are not taken into consideration.

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