- 13 - Croatia - 4,453,500
- 15 - Scotland - 5,116,900
- 27 - Uruguay - 3,460,607
- 28 - Norway - 4,752,735
- 33 - Denmark - 5,475,791
- 34 - N. Ireland - 1,741,600
- 35 - Finland - 5,306,601
- 37 - Moldova - 4,128,047
- 42 - Ireland - 4,339,000
- 48 - Lithuania - 3,369,600
My first thought was, how in the world did Moldova come to be ranked 37, above nations like Nigeria, Australia, South Korea, etc.? They've beaten Kazakhstan (122), Malta (135), Bosnia (62), Hungary (57) and Latvia (72), and had a draw with Turkey (25) in the last couple of years so they're not exactly beating world powers. FIFA rankings just don't make sense to me sometimes.
Anyways, it's interesting to note that all of the nations are in Europe besides Uruguay. Paraguay (24) was also close to making the list with just over 6 million people.
Kind of the opposite topic, but it's still surprising to me that India and China, who have 200 times the population of any of these nations, don't have better national teams.
If you jump up to the rank of 52 you could also include Wales, with a population of 3,004,600, which would mean that Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland would all make the list, along with the Republic of Ireland.
Along those same lines, the Scandinavian countries of Norway, Denmark, and Finland are doing very well with small populations.
Top 50 Nations From Smallest to Largest: