U.S. women’s soccer fights for equal pay

The dominating women’s soccer team is putting their foot down and fighting against an overwhelming pay gap.

By Bronte Price, PoliticKING

Members of the US Women’s soccer team, which has won three straight Olympic gold medals and three World Cup titles overall, and has shattered ratings records for soccer games in America, are standing up for equal pay.  The men’s team, which pales in comparison to the women’s team in terms of victories, earns more in revenue per year and enjoys better playing conditions than the women.

Because of this disparity, five players on the women’s team filed a federal complaint Wednesday, accusing U.S. Soccer of wage discrimination.  Carli Lloyd, Alex Morgan, Megan Rapinoe, Becky Sauerbrunn and Hope Solo say that the members of their team were paid nearly four times less than their male counterparts, regardless of the fact that they are more prominent, better known and more successful.  Earlier this week, the U.S. men failed to qualify for this summer’s Rio Olympics, however the U.S. women will be favored to win their fourth consecutive gold medal.

The bonus pay disparity that the U.S. players revealed in their complaint is significant.  A male player receives $5,000 for a loss in a friendly and up to $17,625 for a victory against a highly-ranked opponent.  However, a member of the women’s national team receives $1,350, but only if the United States wins.  Additionally, women’s players receive no bonuses for losses or ties.

“We have been quite patient over the years with the belief that the federation would do the right thing and compensate us fairly,” said Lloyd, who scored a hat-trick during the final game of the Women’s World Cup.  Lloyd and her teammates say in the complaint that, although they got a total of $2 million for winning the World Cup, the men earned $9 million for losing in the round of 16.

U.S. Soccer responded in a statement saying, "For 30 years, we have been a world leader in promoting the women's game and are proud of the long-standing commitment we have made to building women's soccer."

Last year however, U.S. Soccer spent more than $31 million on the men's team, compared to just $10 million on the women.  Because of its World Cup victory, experts say that the women's team will bring in $5 million in profit this fiscal year.  The men's team, however, will lose about $1 million.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are those of the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of Ora Media, LLC, its affiliates, or its employees.

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