U.S. Soccer president Carlos Cordeiro claims that the U.S. Women’s National Team has been paid more than the men’s team after analysis of federation finances.
In an open letter to federation members on Monday, Cordeiro included the results of 10 years of financial data, including payments made to both the USMNT and USWNT. U.S. Soccer’s numbers, which were verified by an independent accounting firm, showed that the USWNT were paid roughly $34.1 million (including bonuses) from 2010-2018, while the USMNT were paid $26.4 million over the same period.
“Just as our WNT players have shared their perspective, I strongly believe that you — as U.S. Soccer members, stakeholders, sponsors and partners — deserve to hear ours,” Cordeiro wrote Monday. “Now that the Women’s World Cup is behind us, a common understanding of key facts will also help advance our shared work to grow women’s soccer in America as well as the larger national discussion about equality.”
FIFA World Cup bonuses were not included in the latest amount, although with bonuses from 2010 onward, the men’s made $41 million while the women’s finished at $39.7 million over the nine-year period. U.S. Soccer has also admitted they should not be responsible for the inequity of FIFA’s prize money.
The winner of the men’s tournament in Russia made more than the total prize pool of the 24-team women’s tournament this summer in France. After winning its fourth World Cup earlier this month, the USWNT are heading to mediation with the USSF over equal pay.
“This is a sad attempt by the USSF to quell the overwhelming tide of support the USWNT has received from everyone from fans to sponsors to the United States Congress,” Molly Levinson, a spokesperson for the players, said in response to the letter. “The USSF has repeatedly admitted that it does not pay the women equally and that it does not believe the women even deserve to be paid equally. This is why they use words like ‘fair’ and ‘equitable,’ not ‘equal,’ in describing pay.
“The numbers the USSF uses are utterly false, which, among other things, inappropriately include the NWSL salaries of the players to inflate the women’s players’ compensation. Any apples-to-apples comparison shows that the men earn far more than the women.”
The USWNT will play its first match since returning from France, this Saturday in Pasadena against the Republic of Ireland.