By Ken Reed

The U.S. Soccer Federation and the men’s and women’s national teams recently agreed to side-by-side collective bargaining agreements that will equalize pay and working conditions for both teams. It’s a landmark deal, years in the making, and it will boost soccer for all stakeholders in the United States. It also sends a powerful message to the rest of the world that gender equality in soccer is possible. The two CBA deals will have “identical terms” and run through 2028.

As Yahoo! Sports reporter Harry Bushnell writes, the joint CBAs:

“will position both sets of players among the most well-compensated national team players in the world. The men, who had been playing under the terms of a CBA that expired in 2018, will make more per game than they had in the past, and more than their counterparts on superior men’s teams around the world.”

The new agreements bring the women’s and men’s teams together as partners with a joint mission: “to raise soccer’s profile in the United States, and capitalize financially as they do.”

Former U.S. Women’s National Team (USWNT) player and current U.S. Soccer president Cindy Parlow Cone, called the CBA deals “a truly historic moment.” U.S. Men’s National Team (USMNT) player Tyler Adams said he was “extremely proud.” Walker Zimmerman, another USMNT player said “[W]e believe in the whole premise of equal pay. And ultimately, that was a big driving force for us.”

It’s not just pay that will be equal in the new CBAs but working conditions for the national teams as well, including practice facilities, venues, surfaces, travel accommodations, equitable staffing for coaches, etc.

Equal treatment has been a long battle for members of the women’s national team. With these CBA agreements, the mission appears to be accomplished.

“I have been in this for over 20 years, fighting for equal pay,” said Cone. “It’s just such a proud moment to actually be a leader in this, to be the first to do it.”

Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans


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