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Top football/soccer transfer rumors - Feb. 23-Mar. 2 Check out the latest rumors doing the rounds throughout world football. /foxsoccer/world/lists/transfer-rumors-february-24-march-2-football-soccer-players-teams-022414 http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/02/24/022414-Rumor-Mill-GUNDO-GONE-DG-PI_20140224164223176_136_102.JPG
Americans Abroad - Feb. 21-23 Review the top Americans that can take their talents overseas this year. /foxsoccer/usa/lists/americans-abroad-feb-21-23-performances-players-overseas-022314 http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/02/23/022314-SOCCE-forget-me-not-PI_2014022319021849_136_102.JPG
FOX Soccer Power Rankings - Feb. 21-28 FOX Soccer Power Rankings: Paris Saint-Germain return to top five after crushing Champions League win /foxsoccer/world/lists/power-rankings-february-21-28-paris-saint-germain-return-to-top-five-after-crushing-win-022114 http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/02/21/drasticjump-pi_20140221180930519_136_102.JPG
Top football/soccer transfer rumors - Feb. 17-23 Check out the latest rumors doing the rounds throughout world football. /foxsoccer/world/lists/transfer-rumors-february-17-23-football-soccer-players-teams-021714 http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/02/17/021714-SOCCER-Shock-Waves-HF-PI_20140217182428996_136_102.JPG
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World 2018 2820 FOX Soccer Power Rankings - Jan. 24-31 32009621 Defense minded Defense+minded World

The saying rings true for fans of all sports: offense wins games, defense wins championships. So it shouldn’t come as a surprise that our biggest movers this week have all excelled at the 'D' recently. Real Madrid -- not long ago criticized for some poor defensive displays -- haven’t conceded a goal since the turn of the calendar year, while Chelsea conceded just once. Who was victimized by their jumps in the rankings? Click through the gallery to find out:

 

--Thomas Hautmann

John Peters - Getty Images http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/01/23/012314-Soccer-Power-Rankings-G1-AA_2014012322372887_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/01/23/012314-Soccer-Power-Rankings-G1-AA_2014012322372887_107_80.JPG
World 2018 2820 FOX Soccer Power Rankings - Jan. 24-31 32009622 Bayern Munich Bayern+Munich World

League standing: 15-2-0.

 

Last week's ranking: First.

 

Bayern shockingly lost 3-0 to Red Bull Salzburg in the final tune-up ahead of the Bundesliga's return from the winter break. Don’t buy much into it; Josep Guardiola experimented with a three-man backline and rested several key players. The Bayern brass felt the loss came at a perfect time, reminding the team not to lose focus after cruising through the first half of the campaign.

 

FOX Soccer editor's note: Bayern stretched its league unbeaten run to 42 games, with a 2-0 victory over Gladbach on Friday.

Alexander Hassenstein - Getty Images http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/01/23/012314-Soccer-Power-Rankings-G2-AA_2014012322372785_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/01/23/012314-Soccer-Power-Rankings-G2-AA_2014012322372785_107_80.JPG
World 2018 2820 FOX Soccer Power Rankings - Jan. 24-31 32009623 Barcelona Barcelona World

League standing: 16-3-1.

 

Last week's ranking: Second.

 

Barca were held to a surprising 1-1 draw by Levante last weekend, but remained atop La Liga thanks to Atletico also drawing for a second straight league match. On Wednesday, the Catalans got some payback on Levante in the Copa del Rey quarterfinals, winning 4-1. Lionel Messi didn’t score, but assisted on all four goals -- Cristian Tello’s hat trick as well as Levante’s own goal -- for a stellar 400th career match in a Barca shirt. Unfortunately, president Sandro Rosell’s resignation over the Neymar transfer investigation ended the week on a sour note.

JOSE JORDAN - Getty Images http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/01/23/012314-Soccer-Power-Rankings-G3-AA_2014012322372889_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/01/23/012314-Soccer-Power-Rankings-G3-AA_2014012322372889_107_80.JPG
World 2018 2820 FOX Soccer Power Rankings - Jan. 24-31 32009624 Manchester City Manchester+City World

League standing: 16-2-4.

 

Last week's ranking: Third.

 

Man City kept up their frenetic goal-scoring form at home, beating Cardiff 4-2 last week. In eleven of City’s 17 home games this year, they have scored at least four goals, including the past three. In Tuesday’s League Cup match, City didn’t really need to try against West Ham -- already enjoying a 6-0 lead from the first leg -- but whooped them anyway, 3-0. After this Saturday’s FA Cup tie against Watford, two big showdowns loom next week, at Tottenham and against Chelsea at the Etihad.

 

FOX Soccer editor's note: Manchester City stormed back to defeat Watford 4-2 on Saturday.

Andrew Couldridge - Action Images/Reuters http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/01/23/012314-Soccer-Power-Rankings-G4-AA_2014012322372888_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/01/23/012314-Soccer-Power-Rankings-G4-AA_2014012322372888_107_80.JPG
World 2018 2820 FOX Soccer Power Rankings - Jan. 24-31 32009625 Real Madrid Real+Madrid World

League standing: 17-2-2.

 

Last week's ranking: Sixth.

 

Who said Real’s biggest concern heading into 2014 was a somewhat suspect defense? Oh, we did? It seems we were either wrong, or something clicked recently at Real, as their backline has not conceded a goal this calendar year. Following a 1-0 win over PSG in a friendly, Real have celebrated six straight shutout wins in league and cup play. Not bad for Sergio Ramos & Co.

 

FOX Soccer editor's note: Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema carried Real Madrid to another clean sheet, defeating Granada 2-0 at the Santiago Bernabeu.

Angel Martinez - Getty Images http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/01/23/012314-Soccer-Power-Rankings-G5-AA_2014012322372890_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/01/23/012314-Soccer-Power-Rankings-G5-AA_2014012322372890_107_80.JPG
World 2018 2820 FOX Soccer Power Rankings - Jan. 24-31 32009620 Arsenal Arsenal World

League standing: 16-3-3.

 

Last week's ranking: Fifth.

 

After that rough stretch in December (no wins in four games), the Gunners have run off six wins in a row in all competitions, conceding only twice. Next on the agenda: a date at Southampton next Tuesday. Oh, and maybe finding another alternative to Olivier Giroud now that Theo Walcott is out for the season.

 

FOX Soccer editor's note: Arsenal cruised into the fifth round of the FA Cup with a 4-0 win over Coventry City.

Clive Mason - Getty Images http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/01/23/012314-Soccer-Power-Rankings-G6-AA_2014012322372886_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/01/23/012314-Soccer-Power-Rankings-G6-AA_2014012322372886_107_80.JPG
World 2018 2820 FOX Soccer Power Rankings - Jan. 24-31 32006311 Atletico Madrid Atletico+Madrid World

League standing: 16-3-1.

 

Last week's ranking: Fourth.

 

When you’re competing with Barcelona and Real Madrid for La Liga, you have to make the most of your opportunities. But after Barca tied Levante last Saturday, Atletico wasted their chance to take over the top spot, getting held up by Sevilla. The tie also allowed Real to inch within a point of second place, and just like that their cross-town rivals are back atop Atletico in our experts’ minds.

Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno - Getty Images http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/01/23/012314-Soccer-Power-Rankings-G7-AA_2014012322374892_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/01/23/012314-Soccer-Power-Rankings-G7-AA_2014012322374892_107_80.JPG
World 2018 2820 FOX Soccer Power Rankings - Jan. 24-31 32006312 Chelsea Chelsea World

League standings: 15-4-3.

 

Last week's ranking: Ninth.

 

Jose Mourinho has been a busy man recently, but no matter what he does it seems to turn into gold. After securing a deal for Nemanja Matic last week, the Blues agreed a fee with Basel for winger Mohamed Salah, who helped deal his Blues two losses in the Champions League this season and was heavily chased by Liverpool. He also succeeded in chasing Juan Mata out of town. And of course his team keeps on winning; the 3-1 win over Man United is now the Blues’ sixth in a row.

Matthew Peters - Getty Images http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/01/23/012314-Soccer-Power-Rankings-G8-AA_2014012322375894_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/01/23/012314-Soccer-Power-Rankings-G8-AA_2014012322375894_107_80.JPG
World 2018 2820 FOX Soccer Power Rankings - Jan. 24-31 32006314 Juventus Juventus World

League standing: 18-3-1.

 

Last week's ranking: Eighth.

 

The good: Beating Sampdoria for their 12th straight Serie A victory, good for the second-longest winning streak in league history, five games short of Inter’s from 2007. The bad: Juve were bounced by Roma in the quarterfinals of the Coppa Italia, perhaps offering their closest league rival a glimmer of hope in the title race. Like in the Bundesliga, a lot would have to happen to make it interesting, though.

 

FOX Soccer editor's note: Juventus' remarkable winning run finally ground to a halt at Lazio but the Serie A leaders did well to force a 1-1 draw after losing veteran goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon to an early red card.

Giuseppe Bellini - Getty Images http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/01/23/012314-Soccer-Power-Rankings-G9-AA_2014012322380097_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/01/23/012314-Soccer-Power-Rankings-G9-AA_2014012322380097_107_80.JPG
World 2018 2820 FOX Soccer Power Rankings - Jan. 24-31 32006313 Paris Saint-Germain Paris+Saint-Germain World

League standing: 15-6-1.

 

Last week's ranking: Seventh.

 

The French champions were dealt a shock loss by Montpellier in the Coupe de France in mid-week, putting an end to PSG’s ambitions for a domestic treble. Laurent Blanc will rue his decision to rest both Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Thiago Motta until midway through the second half. In Ligue 1, the outlook remains rosy. PSG cruised past Nantes, winning 5-0, while their biggest threat Monaco may have just lost Radamel Falcao for the remainder of the season.

 

FOX Soccer editor's note: Alex rescued Paris Saint-Germain from a second defeat in three days as the Brazilian defender's late goal earned a 1-1 draw at Guingamp.

John Berry - Getty Images http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/01/23/012314-Soccer-Power-Rankings-G10-AA_2014012322380199_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/01/23/012314-Soccer-Power-Rankings-G10-AA_2014012322380199_107_80.JPG
World 2018 2820 FOX Soccer Power Rankings - Jan. 24-31 32009626 Borussia Dortmund Borussia+Dortmund World

League standings: 10-3-5.

 

Last week's ranking: Tenth.

 

Dortmund came out of winter camp without a blemish, winning all four tests against second-tier competition. On Saturday, they face an over-achieving Augsburg side with no room for error. In fourth place as the Bundesliga kicks back off, Dortmund must get off to a good start to remain favorites for a Champions League spot.

 

FOX Soccer editor's note: Borussia Dortmund moved up to third in the standings but it was hardly an afternoon to celebrate as they recorded a 2-2 draw at home against Augsburg.

Alex Grimm - Getty Images http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/01/23/012314-Soccer-Power-Rankings-G11-AA_20140123223802100_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/01/23/012314-Soccer-Power-Rankings-G11-AA_20140123223802100_107_80.JPG
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http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/02/24/022414-Rumor-Mill-GUNDO-GONE-DG-PI_20140224164223176_136_102.JPG Top football/soccer transfer rumors - Feb. 23-Mar. 2 Check out the latest rumors doing the rounds... Check out the latest rumors doing the rounds throughout world football. Robin van Persie's rumored return to Arsenal would be beyond controversial in many ways. Feb 26, 2014 8:47 AM ET 1 59 /foxsoccer/world/lists/transfer-rumors-february-24-march-2-football-soccer-players-teams-022414
http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/02/23/022314-SOCCE-forget-me-not-PI_2014022319021849_136_102.JPG Americans Abroad - Feb. 21-23 Review the top Americans that can take their... Review the top Americans that can take their talents overseas this year. Familiar faces may rejoin United States men's national team conversation. Feb 25, 2014 2:41 AM ET 1 59 /foxsoccer/usa/lists/americans-abroad-feb-21-23-performances-players-overseas-022314
http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/02/21/drasticjump-pi_20140221180930519_136_102.JPG FOX Soccer Power Rankings - Feb. 21-28 FOX Soccer Power Rankings: Paris Saint-Germai... FOX Soccer Power Rankings: Paris Saint-Germain return to top five after crushing Champions League win Giant thumping brings Ibrahimovic and Co. back to our top ten list. Feb 22, 2014 1:50 PM ET 1 59 /foxsoccer/world/lists/power-rankings-february-21-28-paris-saint-germain-return-to-top-five-after-crushing-win-022114
http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/02/17/021714-SOCCER-Shock-Waves-HF-PI_20140217182428996_136_102.JPG Top football/soccer transfer rumors - Feb. 17-23 Check out the latest rumors doing the rounds... Check out the latest rumors doing the rounds throughout world football. Robin van Persie's rumored return to Arsenal would be beyond controversial in many ways. Feb 20, 2014 10:42 AM ET 1 59 /foxsoccer/world/lists/transfer-rumors-february-17-23-football-soccer-players-teams-021714