Colombia feel weight of world ranking going into Copa America

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Santiago, June 5 (IANS) Colombia are feeling the weight of their world ranking in the lead up to the 2015 Copa America championship, which kicks off in Chile next week.

Colombia have maintained their fourth place, according to Thursday’s FIFA rankings, with a total of 1,435 points, coming in behind Argentina, who slipped a rung to land in third place with 1,496, and ahead of Brazil, in fifth place with 1,392 points, reports Xinhua.

“Being in fourth place has presented us with a challenge to stay there always,” defensive midfielder Carlos Sanchez said, according to the Copa’s website on Thursday.

Still, the team is ready for the challenge, suggested Sanchez, whose strength has earned him the nickname “The Rock.” “We have a plan for each match, each rival is different,” he said.

Teammate Teofilo Gutierrez, a striker for Argentine club River Plate, agreed the team has a lot to live up to, saying “we have left our mark worldwide”.

Colombia put up a strong show in the 2014 FIFA World Cup before losing 1-2 to hosts Brazil in the quarter-finals.

South America’s top tournament for national teams is organised by regional football body CONMEBOL and features the association’s 10 members, plus two guest teams from the Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF), Mexico and Jamaica.

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