The U.S. Soccer Association president said in a letter to fans on Tuesday that the U.S. women’s and men’s national teams’ unions have not committed to agreeing to the single pay structure proposed by the U.S. Soccer Association.
The federation’s board refused to move forward with the deal structure the men’s union reached with USSF executive director Wilson Wilson last spring, said a person familiar with the matter who asked not to be named. The structure was only agreed after the men threatened to strike ahead of the June 6 CONCACAF Nations League final, the people said.
USSF presidents Cindy Parlow Cone and Wilson, speaking on a media conference call on Tuesday, declined to elaborate on what happened. “As is the case in any negotiation, there is a lot of work to be done,” Wilson said.
The federation made its bonus proposal public in September and held a joint meeting in November with two unions that are not obligated under federal law to reach similar collective bargaining agreements.
“We’re talking about equal payouts here, the same game payouts, the same commercial revenue sharing agreements,” Parlow Cone said. “But will the contracts be different? Yes, because the teams are different and they have different needs.”
The U.S. Women’s National Team Players Association and the U.S. National Soccer Players Association declined to comment.
Former national team player Parlow Cone became U.S. Soccer president in March 2020 when Carlos Cordeiro resigned as the organization’s lawyers filed legal documents alleging the women’s national team Players’ physical abilities and sense of responsibility are lower than their male counterparts.
Cordeiro announced last week that he would retake the job from Parlow Cone when the USSF National Council meets March 5 in Atlanta. “I think we need to keep looking forward, not backward,” Parlow Cone said.
“There is a lot of work to be done”
“I think I’ve led this organization with integrity and honesty. … We’ve accomplished a lot during very challenging times, so I want members to see what we’ve done. Is it perfect? No, of course not. There is still a lot of work to be done, and we still have a lot of things to accomplish. I want to be a president who doesn’t fight COVID very often.”
The women’s team players sued the federation in March 2019, claiming they were not paid fairly under the collective bargaining agreement compared to what the men’s team was paid under the agreement. U.S. District Judge R. Gary Klausner granted summary judgment to the federal government on the wage claim, and the parties settled the portion of the lawsuit alleging discriminatory working conditions.
The players have appealed the wage decision, and oral arguments are scheduled for March 7 before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Negative things that happened and were said,” Palo Cone said. “The lawsuit has obviously made the CBA negotiations more challenging, but we’re still moving in a positive direction. “
FIFA awarded $400 million in prize money to the 32 teams at the 2018 Men’s World Cup, with $38 million going to champion France. It offered $30 million in prize money to the 24 teams at the 2019 Women’s World Cup, including $4 million for the United States after it won its second straight title.
FIFA has raised the total prize money for the 2022 Men’s World Cup to $440 million, and its president Gianni Infantino has proposed doubling the 2023 Women’s World Cup prize money to $60 million, of which FIFA increased the team to 32.
“We have to find a way to balance the World Cup prize money before Fifa solves it on its own,” Palo Cone said.
The women’s collective bargaining agreement will expire on March 31 as part of a three-month extension. The men’s agreement expired in December 2018.