USWNT Players Association Calls USSF’s Identical Deal Proposal a ‘PR Stunt’ originally appeared on NBC Sports Northwest
The United States Women’s National Team Players Association called the United States Soccer Federation’s offer for identical contracts for men and women on Wednesday as a “PR stunt.”
The USSF announced its proposal on Tuesday in hopes of getting USMNT and USWNT players under the same collective bargaining agreement.
The USSF later refuted the USWNTPA’s statement, saying its proposal was “genuine, authentic, and in good faith.”
Disputes between the USWNT and USSF are not new. The USWNT sued the federation in 2019 for gender discrimination in pay and playing conditions. The team sought more than $66 million in damages under the Equal Pay Act and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
USWNT star and former Portland Thorns striker Alex Morgan along with her USWNT superstar teammate and University of Portland standout who has anchored the OL Reign since 2013 Megan Rapinoe, led the way in the demand for equal pay. The lawsuit was later dismissed and the USWNT has since appealed.
Morgan said she is cautiously optimistic about negotiations with the USSF.
“We have yet to talk about the US Soccer statement, but any commitment to pay equally publicly is good,” Morgan said Wednesday. “However, we have to look line by line at what they actually offer because if you have equal pay, but it’s not even what we got before, or the value we have, we still don’t consider that good enough.”
She kept saying that the USWNT doesn’t want to go into 2022 without a deal.
“We don’t want to start the new year without a new CBA in place, so that’s the number 1 priority of our PA, of our legal team,” she said. “Looking at the [USSF] statements, it is difficult to say, we want to feel encouraged and we want to be optimistic, but we have already seen many statements.”
The USWNT’s agreement expires at the end of 2021, while the USMNT was under the rules of an agreement that expired in 2018.
The 24 teams participating in the 2019 Women’s World Cup shared a $30 million prize pool. In comparison, the 32 men’s teams that took part in the 2018 World Cup split a prize pool of $400 million, with France’s title-winning team taking home $38 million (h/t Goal.com). Fans chanted “equal pay” as the USWNT won the 2019 Women’s World Cup.