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US men, women football teams to receive equal pay in 'historic' agreement

  • 18 May 2022

The deal stipulates that players from both teams "pool and share" the otherwise unequal prize money paid by FIFA for participation in their respective World Cups.

The USWNT are the most successful team in international women's football, having won four World Cups, including the last one in 2019. The USMNT have never won the World Cup. ( AFP )

The US men's and women's national football teams will receive equal pay under a "historic" agreement, following years of pressure from female players.

The move announced by the US Soccer Federation on Wednesday is the first in the world to equalise World Cup prize money awarded to its men's and women's teams.

"This is a truly historic moment. These agreements have changed the game forever here in the United States and have the potential to change the game around the world," said US Soccer president Cindy Parlow Cone.

The terms of the landmark agreement include "identical compensation for all competitions, including the FIFA World Cup, and the introduction of the same commercial revenue sharing mechanism for both teams," USSF said.

In addition, for non-World Cup tournaments, players from "both teams will earn an equal amount of the total prize money paid when both teams participate in the same competition."

READ MORE: Women soccer players sue for equal pay

Collective bargaining agreement

In February, the US national women's team won a $24 million payout and a promise of equal pay in a major settlement with US Soccer, that was contingent on the new collective bargaining agreement.

The question of World Cup prize money had formed a prominent part of the lawsuit, which was filed in 2019 and accused the federation of "stubbornly refusing" to pay its men and women's players equally.

"The accomplishments in this CBA (collective bargaining agreement) are a testament to the incredible efforts of WNT players on and off the field," said US women's captain Becky Sauerbrunn.

She added that she hoped the agreement "will similarly serve as the foundation for continued growth of women's soccer both in the United States and abroad."

The agreement, which runs through 2028, also aims to improve "player health and safety, data privacy and the need to balance responsibilities to both club and country," USSF said.

READ MORE: FIFA to choose 2023 women's World Cup hosts

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