Ecuador stands alone as the only unbeaten South American team following the first four games in the qualifying round for the 2018 World Cup in Moscow. It is the first time the country has been atop the continental football rankings.
The Tri-Color defeated Venezuela Tuesday night 3-1. Fidel Martinez, Jefferson Montero and Felipe Caicedo led the team as it won for the first time since 2000 on Venezuelan turf. Caicedo has scored in all four qualifying games. Venezuela ends the first four-game set without a win, their worst start since the round-robin format was introduced.
Ecuador played without its best player, Enner Valencia, who injured his ankle last month in British league play.
The next games of the World Cup qualifying round will be in March 2016. Qualifying continues into early 2017.