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France face potential World Ranking slide if they lose in Paris

By Sam Smith
France will have to cut their squad size /PA

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It’s not just the Guinness Six Nations on the line tonight in Paris, as the home side could surrender third place in the World Rugby Ranking if they fail to beat Scotland at the Stade de France.


France go into the game knowing they will beat Wales to the Six Nations title if they score a bonus point and win by a margin of 21 points or more.

Fabien Galthie’s men will drop below Ireland if they lose to Scotland and potentially fall three places to sixth if that margin is by more than 15 points with Wales also leapfrogging them. Les Bleus cannot improve on third as the maximum gain possible for victory is 0.14 rating points.

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Scotland will retain ninth place even with a loss by more than 15 points in France. However, Scotland will climb above Argentina into eighth if they avoid defeat.

Meanwhile, in the Rugby Europe Championship, Georgia cannot improve their rating with victory over Romania due to a difference of more than 10 points when home weighting in factored in. The Lelos will only fall one place if they lose by more than 15 points against Romania, something that hasn’t happened since 2006.

Romania will climb above Uruguay if they draw with Georgia. Victory will lift Romania two places to 16th – a position they last occupied in July 2018.

Portugal will jump three places to 21st with victory over neighbours Spain but cannot return to the top 20 as a win by more than 15 points will leave them 0.01 behind Russia. A draw would be enough to lift Portugal above Namibia into 23rd.


Spain cannot fall from 19th even with an emphatic defeat. Los Leones will regain 18th place if they win in Portugal and Romania lose to Georgia. If Romania do upset Georgia then Spain must win by more than 15 points to return to 18th at Uruguay’s expense. Portugal will drop a place to 25th if they lose by more than 15 points.

The rearranged match falls on the eve of the 150th anniversary of Scotland’s first international match, against England at Raeburn Place on 27 March, 1871


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