Women players suing the US Soccer Federation (USSF) said in in court documents filed on Tuesday that the federation has acknowledged that the jobs of male and female soccer players require equal skill.
The language seemed to signal a decrease in tension between the parties after language in documents filed by the federation’s lawyers earlier last month provoked widespread outrage in saying that playing on the men’s national team required a higher level of skill based on speed and strength and carried greater responsibility.
The fierce backlash — not only from the women players, but also from sponsors such as Coca-Cola — ultimately forced federation president Carlos Cordeiro to resign. He was replaced by vice president Cindy Parlow Cone, a former US international.
The federation brought in new legal counsel, which has focused in court filings on refuting the plaintiffs’ claims that it contravened the US Equal Pay Act and other anti-discrimination legislation.
“The parties have significantly narrowed the issues to be tried by way of discovery and briefing,” Tuesday’s filing from the players’ lawyers said. “The USSF no longer disputes that the jobs of the WNT [US women’s national team] and MNT [US men’s national team] players require equal skill, effort and responsibility — and therefore have necessarily conceded that they perform equal work.”
The documents filed by the federation outlining the case that they plan to make said that the female players had not identified comparable male counterparts under US law — which requires equal payment for men and women working “in the same establishment.”
“The undisputed facts show that the WNT and MNT are both geographically and operationally distinct,” the federation filing said. “The WNT and MNT play in different venues in different cities [and often different countries], and participate in separate competitions against completely different pools of opponents.”
The federation again stated that apparent pay discrepancies are due to a different pay structure negotiated by the women’s union.
The case is set to go to trial on May 5.
Last week, Parlow Cone told reporters that she would like to settle the case sooner.
“I don’t think a trial is good for either party or for soccer, both in this country or internationally,” she said. “Obviously our women’s team is the best team in the world and I am hopeful that we can find a resolution before this goes to trial.”
Tuesday’s filings also included potential witnesses for both sides. The lists included all four class representatives in the lawsuit: Carli Lloyd, Alex Morgan, Megan Rapinoe and Becky Sauerbrunn.
Former US coach Jill Ellis, Cordeiro and another former federation president, Sunil Gulati, could also appear.
A sudden shortage of locks in Australian rugby union has opened the door for Matt Philip to reclaim his Wallabies jersey, but the Melbourne Rebels player says that the uncertainties wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic have left him with a difficult choice. The Australian yesterday named Philip among 16 Rebels players either set to leave the Super Rugby club or seriously considering it, underscoring the challenge Rugby Australia faces to retain talent. Linked with a move to Section Paloise Bearn Pyrenees, commonly referred to as Pau, in France’s Top 14, Philip said that he had yet to settle his playing future, and
When Chinese Super League club Tianjin Tianhai surprisingly thrashed Rafael Benitez’s Dalian Yifang 5-1 to stay in the league in November last year, disgruntled fans were quick to allege corruption — the legacy of a murky past that exploded into scandal 10 years ago. Benitez, who led Liverpool to the 2005 UEFA Champions League title, was perplexed by one of the heaviest defeats of his coaching career, saying: “This is a game that I don’t quite understand.” Despite fan complaints to the Chinese Football Association (CFA), no case was brought and there is no evidence of wrongdoing. However, the haste with which some
Georgian tennis star Nikoloz Basilashvili, ranked 27th in the world, was on Sunday charged with physically assaulting his ex-wife, prosecutors said. A court in Tbilisi charged Basilashvili with perpetrating “violence against a family member committed in the presence of a minor,” before releasing him on US$30,000 bail, prosecutor Natia Guruli said. He faces up to three years in prison if found guilty. Basilashvili’s ex-wife, Neka Dorokashvili, on Sunday told Mtavari TV that Basilashvili “physically assaulted” her on Friday in the presence of their five-year-old son. Basilashvili denied the charges, his lawyer Irma Chkadua said. The 28-year-old won his second ATP Tour title at the China
As professional soccer returned to Denmark, fans used Zoom to be part of the action. Thousands of Danish soccer fans on Thursday logged on to the conferencing software and were transported to Ceres Park for a league match between AGF and Randers that heralded the resumption of the nation’s pandemic-affected soccer season. While the stadium itself was without fans, the faces of thousands of supporters who joined the Zoom call were shown on giant screens that ran along one side of the pitch. Families wearing club shirts and scarves cheered inside their living rooms. Some were seen clenching their fists in joy after