Women soccer players shortchanged

United States goalkeeper Hope Solo (1) warms up in August 2016.
United States goalkeeper Hope Solo (1) warms up in August 2016.


The controversy over equal pay for the U.S. women’s soccer team has been one that has been fought for decades on and off of the playing field. A few months ago, this issue was in the news once again as the fight for equal pay continued. The U.S. national women’s team deserves equal, and even more, than the men’s.

Women are paid on a salary-based contract with a salary of up to $72,000 a year and $1,350 worth of bonuses for wins. On the other hand, men are paid per game, win or lose, and make up to $17,625 for a win. That is when the men win five games, a player could receive the same amount of money in the women’s slurry. It is completely unfair  how the woman work continuously, winning game after game, but still receive less than the men. 

After winning the World cup in 2015, the U.S. national team took home $2 millions. When the U.S. men’s national team lost in round 166 of their World cup, they received $9 million. After winning more games, you would think the women would receive more. In 1025, a goalkeeper Hope Solo played a total of 23 games and was paid $366,00 by U.S. Soccer, while goalkeeper Tim Howard played a total of eight games and was paid $498,495 (O’Donnell 4). Although it does not seem like much of a difference, when comparing the 23 games played by Solo to the eight games played by Howard, Solo had much more commitment and career achievements.

The unequal pay violates the Equal Pay Act and Title VII, therefore, giving the U.S. women’s soccer team the right to fight. Each of these acts “prohibits employers from discriminating against employees on the basis of sex, race, color, national origin, and religion.” This case is somewhat different due to the fact that “There’s never been a situation where the same employer has hired men and women to play the same sport under the same working conditions,” as stated by team lawyer Rich Nichols.

Some may say that the EEOC claims any differences in compensation arise as the result or factors other than gender, but that does not seen to the be case. Although this is a new case, it does not give the EEOC the right to treat the situation unfairly.  If anything, it should be looked into more to make sure it is as equal as possible.

When a team like the U.S. women’s national team has done so much for female soccer, they deserve to be paid for what they have done. Even as the U.S. women’s soccer team continues to be number one in the world according to FIFA, they continue to lose. As FIFA Women’s World Cup champions and Olympic gold medalist Becky Sauerbrunn once stated, “If you feel like you’re owned more, then fight for it.”

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