The U.S women’s national team players have already earned $90,000 each in bonuses heading into the Women’s World Cup quarterfinals, but that number would be six times larger if it were the men’s national team, according to a report from Caitlin Murray in The Guardian.
In a nifty interactive, The Guardian shows how much each team makes from U.S. Soccer for advancements such as qualifying for the World Cup, advancing, winning it all and going on a victory tour. The numbers were derived from an analysis of the USWNT and USMNT collective bargaining agreements obtained by The Guardian.
At this stage, the men would have made $550,000 each, per the report — six times more than the women.
USWNT makes less than USMNT at World Cup
It should be noted FIFA does offer different prizes to winners in both the men’s and Women’s World Cups. The total prize money for the women’s tournament in France is $30 million, double what it was in 2015. But FIFA also increased the men’s total for last year in Russia to $400 million, widening the pay gap even further.
That said, under the current pay structure, the men out-earn the women by a large margin in each category, with the exception of a victory tour if the USWNT wins the title.
Right out of the gate, the top player for the men’s team makes nearly three times as much as the women for qualifying for the tournament ($108,695 compared to $37,500).
The win bonus for qualification games is even more stark at $12,500 for the men compared to $3,000 for the women. At most, men can net $200,000 — they play 11 more games than the women — while the USWNT makes a max $15,000 for five matches.
Each man called up to the 23-man roster makes a $68,750 bonus while women make $37,500. Advancing to the knockout stage brings in a total $329,376 per player for the men’s squad, who receive as a team almost $7,000 per victory in the group stage and nearly $200,000 for advancing.
The women receive nothing for group stage victories, nor for moving on.
Winning the World Cup is another windfall for the men who do it, each taking home $407,608 while the women get $110,000 per person.
The one thing the women do make in terms of World Cup earnings that the men don’t is a bonus for a World Cup victory tour. Players receive $60,869 for four games.
In all, max earnings for the women stand at $260,869 while the men stand to make more than $1.1 million. It’s a difference of $853,560.
Women’s pay inequality basis of lawsuit
While the specific numbers from the current CBAs are new, the knowledge that the USWNT is given significantly less than the men’s team in terms of bonuses is not. The team filed a lawsuit against U.S. Soccer in March alleging “institutionalized gender discrimination.”
Bonuses were the basis of the suit, with the USWNT arguing it brings in more revenue than the USMNT but is paid on the same structure and at a reduced rate. The sides tentatively agreed to mediation last week in an attempt to avoid the courtroom.
U.S. Soccer does pay the women fixed salaries of $100,000 a year along with an approximately $65,000 salary for playing in the federation-backed NWSL.
The $100,000 salary only brings the women’s total to a max $360,869 compared to $1.114 million if each team were to win the World Cup.
U.S. not only country with pay issue
The United States is not the only country in which the women’s national team is fighting for better pay and respect, though it is the nation to which all others turn.
Women’s teams are fighting to be seen as equal to the men’s teams on issues that go beyond pay, including better marketing and treatment. That marketing component is on display in France, where Yahoo Sports’ Dan Wetzel says FIFA is absent in showcasing the tournament, arguably with the deepest field in history, as it’s being played.
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