The United States men’s national soccer team is currently facing heartbreak as they failed to punch their ticket to Russia for the 2018 World Cup this upcoming summer. This will mark the first time that the men’s national team hasn’t qualified since 1986.
The national team had many opportunities to clinch their spot, but failed to follow through and solidify a place. After last week’s 2-1 loss to Trinidad and Tobago, fans of the men’s national team have been questioning the program as a whole. Since their current disappointing loss, their reigning head coach Bruce Arena has resigned.
Arena was assigned the head coaching position earlier this year after Jurgen Klinsmann failed in his duties, as he wasn’t directing the program in the direction that the committee was looking for. But what most fans are wondering now is, what’s next for the program?
Cici Long, a Seattle University student, explains her view. “I feel like the men’s national team should stop replacing coaches and start replacing players,” she said.
Another question that the program is facing is why the men are getting paid more than the women’s national team. Currently, there is a major pay gap between the men and women’s national teams. The women’s team was ranked number one going into the 2015 world cup, and later took home the gold as they successfully added world cup champions to their resumes.
Last year, the New York Times published an article about U.S. soccer’s revenue as they broke down the wages between the teams. According to salon.com, the women’s national team increased the earnings of U.S soccer during their 10-game victory tour after winning the world cup.
During this victory tour, the women’s national team collected $6.6 million, whereas the men only collected $2 million, causing the women to surpass the men by three times as much. The article also published that the 50th ranked male player made just over $246,238, while the 50th ranked female player made an earning of only $26,000.
Izzi Roberts, a Seattle University student expresses, “I think the U.S. Soccer federation needs to reevaluate wages, because the pay gap that they have is unfair.” It may be argued that the men’s team may bring in more revenue because men’s sports are more popular in general, but the article published by New York Times refuted this claim in recent years. They are even projected to bring in more in upcoming years as well.
There is a lot of controversy that surrounds this current topic, but what will be U.S. soccer’s next move as they move forward? Will the program make the reasonable changes it needs to in order to better the program as a whole?
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