In what is perhaps a rather interesting twist of events, the U.S. Soccer Federation (USSF) released a “fact sheet” regarding the U.S. Women’s soccer team as part of a lawsuit filed by the Women’s team against the USSF alleging pay discrimination due to gender. As it turns out, the U.S. Women’s soccer team was LOSING the USSF money for most of the past decade, but they still were paid more money overall than the Men’s soccer team.
Just so there is no confusion and contradiction to my other article regarding the Women’s team being paid, the USSF and FIFA are two different organizations. If you remember, FIFA pays its male players roughly $400 million and its female players $30 million. As I said from that other article, from that alone, you would think there was gender discrimination, but I asserted that the Men’s team generate more revenue than the Women’s team, so they have a larger pool of money to receive (and the Women are paid a larger percentage from the smaller pool than the Men do in the larger pool).
But the USSF is slightly different. Back in June, the Women’s team released info saying that they brought in more revenue than the Men’s team did ($50.8M vs. $49.9M, so barely any difference, but still enough to drive their point). However, there are a number of things that actually hurt the Women’s team in their suit.
First, as it stands, that number has not been confirmed, as far as I can tell. They COULD be right, but given some statistics that we will see later on, I have my doubts regarding this.
Second, there is one major difference between the Women’s team and the Men’s team that affects wages, and that’s that one receives a base salary of $100,000, plus bonuses of $67,500 to $72,500 for playing in a national soccer league, while the other is not paid a base salary at all. The gender that is paid a base salary and bonuses is the female gender. The men are only paid bonuses for games.
What’s more, the Women’s team receives other benefits such as a 401k, health insurance, which includes maternity leave and injury protection. The men don’t receive such benefits.
Third, the USSF claimed that they actually pay women more than they do men. According to The Daily Wire: “USSF claimed that it paid women $34.1 million in salaries and game bonuses and ‘we paid our men $26.4 million – not counting the significant additional value of various benefits that our women’s players receive but which our men do not.’”
So if the USSF is correct, they are actually paying women MORE than men, simply due to salaries + game and other bonuses.
The USSF also claimed that the “hypothetical per game comparison” often used in Leftists’ arguments regarding gender wage discrimination (as far as soccer goes) isn’t exactly plausible because neither team has ever played 20 friendly matches in a year: “That said, if the men and women ever did play in and win 20 friendlies in a year and were paid the average bonus amount, a women’s player would earn more from U.S. Soccer than the men’s player – the women’s player would earn at least $307,500 (WNT and NWSL salaries, plus game bonuses) and the men’s player would earn $263,333 (game bonuses only),” according to the USSF.
But perhaps what is most damning for the Women’s case against the USSF is the following:
“From 2009 through 2019 – a timeframe that includes two Women’s World Cup championships – the Women’s National Team has earned gross revenue of $101.3 million over 238 games, for an average of $425,446 per game, and the Men’s National Team has earned gross revenue of $185.7 million over 191 games, for an average of $972,147 per game. More specifically, WNT games have generated a net profit (ticket revenues minus event expenses) in only two years (2016 and 2017). Across the entire 11-year period, WNT games generated a net loss of $27.5 million. Nevertheless, U.S. Soccer does not view these as losses, bur rather as an important investment in our Women’s National Team and in the long-term growth of women’s soccer.”
In other words, the Women’s team has LOST money for the USSF in most years in the past decade and STILL are paid more than the men are. And they dare to cry “sexism”?
But do you want to know what is honestly the saddest part of this? Reread the last sentence of the paragraph: the USSF did not see these net-loss years as losses at all, but as an investment in the future of women’s soccer. They are willing to take some years in the red for the sake of women’s soccer (which would usually be a bad thing for a business, but I suppose the Men’s team makes enough to make the USSF feel comfortable with such losses for the sake of women hoping to become professional soccer players). So basically, the Women’s soccer team, in their lawsuit against the USSF, is essentially acting like one of those spoiled kids who get everything they ask for and on their 16th birthday, are given a brand new and expensive car, but they cry and throw temper tantrums because “it’s the wrong color” or “it’s not the kind of car I wanted”.
Granted, I’m fairly certain most of those instances on those reality TV shows are fake, but there are a lot of comparisons here. The U.S. Women’s soccer team, as far as the USSF is concerned, makes MORE money than the Men’s team does, but they cry and whine and lie that they actually don’t.
Matter of fact, a spokeswoman for the Women’s team said that the USSF’s “fact check” was a “ruse” and a “sad attempt” at thwarting the lawsuit: “The USSF fact sheet is not a ‘clarification’. It is a ruse. Here is what they cannot deny. For every game a man plays on the MNT, he makes a higher base salary payment than a woman on the WNT. For every comparable win or tie, his bonus is higher. That is the very definition of gender discrimination.”
It certainly would be the very definition of gender discrimination if anything she said was actually true.
First, the Men’s team does not actually make more in base salary than a woman. They don’t make ANY base salary, as was just discussed.
Second, I highly doubt this is a ruse. USSF President Carlos Cordeiro wrote an open letter in which he stated that he ordered U.S. Soccer staff to perform “an extensive analysis of the past 10 years of U.S. Soccer’s financials.” This is what the fact sheet eventually turned into. He also said that the analysis was “reviewed by an independent accounting firm.” So while the USSF did an internal analysis of the organization’s financials over the last decade (largely because they are pretty much the only ones who can do that apart from a government agency), the analysis was also reviewed by an independent party, allowing for objectivity.
However, what does appear to be a “ruse”, or at least highly illegitimate and wrong is the U.S. Women’s suit against the USSF. They are suing under the claim that they are being paid less than the men are, but USSF financials show a completely different story – one where the Women’s team is actually paid MORE than the Men’s team due to having a base salary to accompany other bonuses that the men don’t get. And sure, while the men get paid more in bonuses than the women do, the reason for that is because they don’t receive a base salary.
Apart from the USSF, the Women’s team doesn’t have much of a case regarding gender discrimination in their wages either. As I discussed in the other article regarding the U.S. Women’s team, the only reason FIFA pays the women less money is because the Women’s division generates less revenue for FIFA than the men do.
The Women’s World Cup that took place in Vancouver four years ago only generated around $73 million in revenue, 13% of which went to the players. The 2010 Men’s World Cup in South Africa generated $4 billion in revenue, of which 9% went to the players. The Men’s World Cup in Russia back in 2018 generated $6 billion, while this year’s Women’s World Cup made roughly $131 million.
Over the last World Cups that were played, the Women’s World Cup only made a little over 2% of what the Men’s World Cup made. So in what world could the Women’s team at all be able to make anywhere near as much as the Men could? The Women already get paid a larger portion of the revenue from their World Cup than the Men do.
But getting back to the USSF, they are actually rather nice to the women, all things considered. The Women’s division tends to bring losses for the organization, but the idea of having a program for women who wish to become professional soccer players is noble enough to accept these losses, so long as they can offset them with the Men’s revenue (and the Women do sometimes bring in profits anyway).
The USSF pays women more than they do men, they tend to LOSE money regarding their Women’s team, give women more benefits and a base salary which they do not give to men, and the Women’s team, in their self-righteous and toxic mentality of victimhood still believe they are being discriminated against when NONE of the statistics show that to be the case?
Not a good look for the U.S. Women’s team.
1 Timothy 6:9-10
“But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs.”
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