World Football Elo Ratings

World Football Elo Ratings (Eng. about " World Football Elo - rating scale ") is a ranking system for senior national teams in football. It is based on the method of Elo, but modified to include various soccer -specific variables. It is an alternative to the FIFA World Ranking, the used by FIFA and significantly more common in the media, game commentators and official functionaries ranking system for national teams.

The system is designed in theory from it, relative to map quantitatively the ( for this to exist and constantly presupposed ) actual strength of a team to their betting combatants and to calculate an expected value for the outcome of each game. This is different from the FIFA World Ranking, which, however, without a quantitative forecast future results will likewise evaluate the results of recent years and derives from it a ranking of just aimed theoretically. (Hence also in English the name Elo - ratings as opposed to FIFA ranking. )

However, since not compete in the practice football teams for years to come with an unchanged line-up and skill level, a conclusion from the current ranking score on the current skill level in the Elo system is only conditionally possible.

The rankings take into account all international A-team games since 1872, for which results. In doing so, however, decreased with each new result of a team the weight of the other previous games. This is practically only the last 30 games relevant to the placement.

In the World Football Elo Ratings- table teams also are considered which are not members of FIFA, such as Tibet or Greenland.

Current Rankings

The ranking as of March 26, 2014, compiled on the basis of the home page for the ELO ranking in football.

List of leaders of the Elo rankings

The following is a list of nations that have reached the first rank in the Elo rankings since 2000:

Top 10 since 1970

The following is a list of teams with the highest average Elo value since January 1, 1970.


The system, developed by the Hungarian mathematician Arpad Élő is used by the International Chess Federation, to describe the playing strength of chess players quantitatively. In 1997, Bob Runyan, the system of Elo for international football, and published the results on the Internet. He was also the first operator to the homepage of the Elo rankings in football.


The Elo system was adapted for football by miteinbezog the occasion of the play, an adjustment for the home court advantage and the goal difference in the final result.

The factors to be considered when calculating a new Elo points for a team are:

  • The old score of the team itself,
  • The old score of the opponent,
  • If necessary, the venue where the team or the opponent,
  • The goal difference of the game outcome,
  • The importance of the tournament or event.

The various meanings of competitions in descending order are:

  • World Cup finals matches
  • Final Games of Continental Championships and Confederations Cup games,
  • Qualifiers for World and Continental Championships,
  • All other tournaments and
  • Friendly matches.

Basis of calculation

The calculations are based on the following formulas:

In which

Weighting of the game

The weighting of the game is represented by the constant K, depending on the importance of the game and the tournament, in which it takes place.

Goal difference

The goal difference is incorporated by the number of G. G is equal to 1 if the goal difference is 0, 1 or -1, and is at a higher goal difference increased by the respective, shown below, calculating:

With goal difference of one goal or a draw

With goal difference of two goals

With goal difference of three goals or more

  • Where N represents the goal difference

Example table:


W is the result of the game from (1 for a win, 0.5 for a draw, 0 for a loss ).

Expected Result

We is the expected result from the following formula:

It is always greater than 0 and less than 1 case correspond to the limiting cases 0 an expected defeat as safe, 1 an expected victory as safe.

Dr is the distance between points ( positive or negative) in the evaluation of the opposing team to the team to be evaluated. Here, where appropriate, the team will be assessed with home advantage 100 points higher than it is in the actual standings. Is dr = 0, then this means that both teams as equally be considered (including the home advantage ). Accordingly, then gives an expected result We = 0.5. This in turn means that win, draw or loss are considered possible, but that corresponds to the probability of a victory of the probability of losing exactly.

Example calculation: Before the final of the European Football Championship 2012 Spain had 194 Elo points more than Italy. Hence the probability of a victory for Spain calculated (and correspondingly for a victory in Italy ).

Example table: