Five members of the U.S. women’s national soccer team filed a complaint Thursday with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), demanding that the women’s team––who have outperformed their male counterparts in just about every metric possible in the past couple years––be paid just as much as the men.
The players who signed the complaint against the U.S. Soccer Federation, the governing board of U.S. soccer, are some of the biggest names on the team, and in American women’s sports: Carli Lloyd and Becky Sauerbrunn, who are co-captains, the goalkeeper Hope Solo, the midfielder Megan Rapinoe, and the forward Alex Morgan.
A statement from their lawyer (sent to Sports Illustrated) said the men’s team earns almost four times more than the women’s squad. The New York Times broke that disparity down even further. Women on the team make a salary, and like men, are eligible for bonuses. And that’s about where similarities stop. A man makes $5,000 for a loss; women make nothing for a loss or a tie. Men earn as much as $17,625 for a win, The Times reported. Women make $1,350 for one.
The debate over pay mirrors a similar argument being played out in international tennis. Earlier this month, Raymond Moore, the CEO of Indian Wells Tennis Garden, appeared to deride women’s tennis, where the Grand Slams and some major tournaments offer equal prize money.