US Soccer agrees milestone deal to pay men’s and women’s teams equally

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The United States celebrate following victory at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games (Getty Images)
The United States celebrate following victory at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games (Getty Images)

The U.S. Soccer Federation agreed to landmark collective bargaining agreements with its men’s and women’s teams, equalizing compensation for the first time.

The CBAs announced Wednesday run through 2028. The USSF is the first national governing body to promise both sexes matching money.

Here are some of the terms included in the agreements:

WORLD CUP PRIZE MONEY

The unions agreed to pool FIFA’s World Cup payments for this year’s men’s World Cup and next year’s Women’s World Cup. U.S. Soccer will take 10% of the money awarded to each team, then split the rest among the 46 players on the teams’ rosters — 23 men and 23 women. For the 2026 and 2027 tournaments, the USSF will take 20% and split the rest in a similar manner.

For qualifiers for a World Cup or other major tournament, each player gets $10,000 per game in base pay plus $14,000 for a win and $4,000 for a draw.

FIFA earmarked $400 million for the 2018 men’s tournament, including $38 million to champion France, and $30 million for the 2019 women’s tournament, including $4 million to the champion United States. FIFA has increased the total to $440 million for the 2022 men’s World Cup, and its president, Gianni Infantino, has proposed FIFA double the women’s prize money to $60 million for the 2023 Women’s World Cup, in which FIFA has increased the teams to 32.

The men’s national team has qualified for the World Cup in Qatar later this year. The women will play in a qualifying tournament this year.

OLYMPIC PRIZE MONEY

Each player earns a $10,000 per game appearance fee, $12,000 for a win and $4,000 for a draw. There is a $36,000 bonus for an Olympic gold medal, $24,000 for a silver and $8,000 for a bronze. The men’s tournament currently is limited to under-23 teams.

OTHER COMPETITIONS

Players will split 70% of the prize money for a CONCACAF Gold Cup and the equivalent women’s tournament, and get payments of $12,000 for a win and $4,000 for a draw in the Gold Cup, Nations League or other official competitions.

Each also will get an $8,000 appearance fee for exhibitions and $10,000 for competitive matches, $10,000 for a win over a team in the top 25 of the FIFA rankings and Canada and $3,000 for a draw; for other opponents, the figures are $5,000 for a win and $2,000 for a draw.

COMMERCIAL REVENUE

The women and men will receive commercial revenue from tickets for that team’s matches controlled by the USSF, with bonuses for sellouts, and each team will receive a portion of broadcast, partner and sponsor revenue. The USSF gets to deduct from the total agency and licensing fees along with 15% to recapture expenses.

Players on each team will split commercial money based on their share of total rosters, sharing 10% of the amount from $55 million up to $75 million and 15% of the amount over $75 million. Ticket money will be shared $3 per ticket for 2022 and for 2023-26 at the higher of $5.06 per ticket or 10% of the average price if a sellout. The figure increases to $5.75 for 2027-28.

RETIREMENT

Players will each get a 401(k) plan and the USSF will match up to 5% of a player’s compensation, subject to IRS limits. That money will be deducted from the shares of commercial revenue.

CHILD CARE

Child care, covered for women for more than 25 years, will be extended to men during national team training camps and matches.

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