U.S. Women’s Soccer Team Has Victory Parade in NYC, But Still No Equal Pay

The U.S. women’s soccer team recently won the 2019 World Cup championship. Following their 2-0 win against the Netherlands, chants of “equal pay” erupted from the crowd. Although the U.S. women’s soccer team has consistently performed better in the world cup tournament than the U.S. men’s team, the women’s team earns lower salaries. A few months ago, the women’s team sued the U.S. Soccer Federation for gender discrimination in response to this pay disparity. Many are calling for the women’s team to have equal pay. Some, such as New York representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, even say that the women’s team should earn more than the men’s team, since the women rank better internationally. 

Blocking Men’s World Cup Funds Until Women Get Equal Pay

Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia recently proposed a new bill that would withhold federal funding for the men’s World Cup until the women’s team achieves equal pay. The men’s funding in question is for the 2026 World Cup tournament, which the U.S. is co-hosting with Canada and Mexico. Explaining the need for his bill, Senator Manchin said, “The clear unequitable pay between the U.S. men’s and women’s soccer teams is unacceptable and I’m glad the U.S. Women’s Soccer Team latest victory is causing public outcry . . . they are the best in the world and deserve to be paid accordingly." The proposed bill would cut funding to the host cities and all participating organizations for the 2026 men’s World Cup.

Explaining the Gender Pay Disparity

The women and men’s U.S. soccer teams have two different collective-bargaining agreements with the U.S. Soccer Federation, so making direct comparisons between the teams can be difficult. Also, the differences in revenue that the two teams bring in can also explain the pay disparity. For example, the total prize money for this year’s women’s World Cup was $30 million, with the winning team taking away roughly $4 million. The prize money for the men’s 2018 World Cup was $400 million, with the champions taking away $38 million. So, although the women’s total prize money is less than the men’s, the winning women’s team gets a higher percentage of their prize than the men. The vast differences in prize money can be explained by revenue differences. Last year’s men’s World Cup brought in roughly $6 billion, but this year’s women’s World Cup is projected to make about $130 million. However, starting in 2016, the U.S. women’s team began to outearn the men’s team in revenue. From 2016 to 2018, women’s team generated approximately $50.8 million in revenue, compared with $49.9 million for men’s games.

Seek Legal Assistance

If you have experienced gender pay discrimination in the workplace, seek legal assistance today. The Law Office of Christopher Q. Davis, located in New York City, can assist you. Contact us today at (646) 430-7930 to schedule a free case evaluation and receive experienced legal counsel. You don’t pay unless we win.