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New US Football Factsheet Reveals Megan Rapinoe's Narrative on Equal Pay



The United States has the best women's football team in the world, as shown by their recent victory in the Women's World Cup. However, we were told that the women's team is still facing open sexism and a pay gap compared to our men.

This has repeatedly awakened feminists like USWNT Captain Megan Rapinoe. In fact, the women's team has even filed suit against US football for gender pay discrimination. I have already advanced the argument for equal pay and explained why Rapinoe is far from a good role model but a new open letter and leaflet issued by US Soccer refutes completely the argument of the Crusaders with equal pay.

First, it shows that although US football is the target of the USWNT's claim for equal pay, not even those who pay men and women unequally. According to US Football President Carlos Cordeiro, they actually pay more to women than to men. He writes :

For the past ten years, US football has paid more than our men's national team to our women's national team. From 201

0 to 2018, US football paid US $ 34.1 million in salaries and gaming bonuses to our wives and US $ 26.4 million to our men – without the significant added value of various benefits that players receive from our men but not received.

What is it like for sexists? Cordeiro explains that this pay gap – in favor of women – is due to different pay structures negotiated by men and women, as the women's team receives annual salary and benefits, while men are paid more sporadically and in proportion to participation. This inequality is necessary because men have more professional football opportunities outside the international competition, for example in the leagues in Europe and in Major League Soccer. National football is a part-time job, not a full-time job.

Now it is true that the Men's World Cup offers a significantly higher prize money, and that if the prize money is counted, the men received from 2010 to 2018 $ 41 million and the women only $ 39.7 million, despite outperforming the men in comparison to their own competitors. In general, the last men's World Cup winning team received $ 38 million in prize money, while the winners of this year's Women's World Cup received a relatively modest $ 4 million.

However, this is a matter for the International Federation of Association Football, not US football. This means that the claim for "equal pay" has not even been filed against the correct court. In addition, the difference in FIFA's prize money is explained by differences in revenue generation and audience size, not sexism.

As I wrote before :

Almost half the world watched the men's World Cup 2018, nearly 3.6 billion viewers watched part of the tournament. The final alone reached an audience of over 1.1 billion people. Subsequently, the sponsor of the tournament, FIFA, achieved a profit of over 6 billion US dollars.

The women's team achieves a significant but significantly lower number of spectators. We do not have data for the 2019 tournament, but during the last Women's World Cup in 2015, 764 million viewers registered for part of the tournament. That's fine, but it's still fading compared to the audience of the men's tournament.

No wonder, explains Cordeiro's letter : "We look forward to the day when the Americans use their time and money equally for women's and men's football." But as the US football leaflet today It is not clear that day, and wage structures reflect this reality.


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