The national soccer team is 25th in the world rankings after advancing to the round of 16 at the FIFA World Cup in Qatar.
FIFA, the sport's world governing body, in its global rankings released on Dec. 22 placed Korea at 25th with 1,539.49 points, up from 28th in October and matching the country's highest spot since Oct. 25, 2012. The nation's best ranking in history was 17th in December 1998.
The Taegeuk Warriors' performance at the Qatar World Cup that ended on Dec. 19 was reflected in their latest ranking, as Korea finished second in Group H with one win, one draw and one loss. The team lost to Brazil, 4-1, in the knockout round.
Despite losing in the tournament's quarterfinals, Brazil remained atop the rankings while champion Argentina rose from third to second.
Japan, which topped its World Cup group, rose four spots to 20th as the highest ranking Asian country and Iran, which won one game in its group, was 24th. Korea came next among Asian teams in the rankings, followed by Australia (27th), Saudi Arabia (49th) and Qatar (60th).