The Australian players’ union has praised a new pay deal announced by the American federation that will see all prizemoney shared equally between its men’s and women’s teams – but suggested it wouldn’t pursue a similar deal with Football Australia, claiming it would not solve the root cause of pay inequality.
US Soccer on Thursday announced a landmark deal under which all prizemoney will be pooled and split 50-50 between its mens and women’s national teams. The prizemoney on offer at the mens World Cup is almost six times greater than at the women’s tournament.
The deal is the first of its kind and comes after years of public pressure from key players and an acrimonious dispute between US Soccer and its world champion women’s team.
It also follows the historic equal revenue-sharing agreement signed between FA and the players’ union, Professional Footballers Australia, in 2019 that ensured an even split of all national team windfall, except prizemoney, between male and female national team players.
Under the terms of that agreement, the Socceroos and Matildas now share 26 percent of the combined national team revenue, while the women’s players were also guaranteed the same working conditions and professional standards as their male counterparts.
However, the PFA will not pursue an even split of all prizemoney as part of its collective agreement with FA, saying it doesn’t believe the male players should sacrifice their earnings to make up for FIFA’s unequal allocation of prizemoney.
World football’s governing body will award a total of $630 million in prizemoney for the 2022 men’s World Cup, compared to just $86m for the 2023 Women’s World Cup.
Male teams receive $14m for reaching the World Cup finals, while female national teams receive $1.1m for qualifying. The winner of the mens World Cup receives over $57m, compared to just under $6m for the women’s champion. The PFA says it does not wish to achieve equal pay by making the Socceroos subsidize the Matildas and instead is lobbying for FIFA to set equal prizemoney.