Closing the Wage Gap

In the United States today, women are getting paid eighty cents for every dollar a man makes. This is an average across all fields of work, but in recent years, professional athletes, specifically women soccer players, have brought this to the attention to both the nation and the larger world. Women athletes are tired of feeling underappreciated for their work compared to their male peers, and they aren’t the only working population who feel this way. Professional soccer players should be paid based on team and individual performance, not by views and attendance count.

In March of 2016, five top players on the Women’s National Team filed for unfair pay with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. The New York Times created a comparison of the women’s and men’s team finding in recent years the women's team has play as much as 50 percent more games than the men and doubling the men's team win count with 88 wins to the men's 44.  In this case, the Women are working more per year compared to men and they are doing much better than the men’s team. Many  competitions are based on statistics in this world, such as getting into college, based on how well an individual performs. At other regular jobs, people are paid based off of hours worked whether there is a pay per hour or salary, amount of time worked goes into it which should correlate with athletes too. Since women have a substantially larger amount of games played, therefore more minutes played than men, they should be paid more than men. The US Soccer Federation should be rewarding the team who continues to win, throughout the season and in international tournaments, instead of supporting the team that continues to lose.This helps base their income on performance and successfulness instead of views, which helps create  more equality in the wage gap for women.

What makes this situation even worse is that the male players are still getting paid more than women even with the increased profit the Women’s National Team has been producing in the past couple of years. PBS released a budget report from the US Soccer Federation predicting that the women's team will bring in over $17 million while their male peers are producing less than half of that in revenue. When the women are making a profit higher than the men in sales, even with less views and attendance, they should be getting paid more. The US Men’s National Team sales are predicted to go down which, should conclude to getting paid less. If men are getting paid more based off of views and the people who are coming to games, the merchandise being sold should be looked at too. Women’s sales are creating a much larger profit, and shouldn’t just being going to the clubs if the men are making money off of it. While it should be based on performance, if the board doesn’t change its salary distribution, sales and other profits should be looked into for paying women. If they are working harder and not getting paid for it, they need to be compensated in some other way. The better their performance gets, normally, the more memorabilia they will sell. Statisticians should look for correlation between these two to help women earn fair pay.

Another important concept to look at when it comes to fair pay is what the players are getting paid for. In an interview with the New York Times, Rich Nichols, the general counsel for the United States Women’s National Soccer Team Players Association, said, “Seventy-five percent of (their) compensation, the women have to perform at a world-beating level just to keep pace financially. And that victory tour money? The women had to play the extra games to get it. The men get paid just for showing up.¨ Even though the Men’s National Team hasn’t made it far in recent tournaments, they are still getting paid more than the women who have won multiple tournaments in recent years. Women have to do extra work to earn the same amount as the men regularly when the men aren’t even doing well. To earn 75% of what they are, the women have the be the best in the world. However the men continue to lose and are outperformed by other teams. Women should not have to continually being putting in more work and playing a lot more than the men just to earn the same amount of money. America needs to make way for equal pay. If the commissioners continue to do nothing about it, Americans need to step up and stand behind women and start supporting their careers as well.

This is one solution for this discrepancy that professional soccer players should be paid based on team and individual performance, not by views and attendance count. By paying men and women fairly for their work, a more equal society can be created. Although equal pay for women athletes may only seem important to women, it should in fact concern anyone who cares about an equal society. A high profile change in salary for these players could have a positive impact on youth and women alike looking up to women who lead as a role model and have the chance to work alongside and get paid the same as their male peers.

Works Cited

Das, Andrew. "Pay Disparity in U.S. Soccer? It’s Complicated." The New York Times. The New

York Times, 21 Apr. 2016. Web. 21 Sept. 2016. <>.

Santhanam, Laura. "Data: How Does the U.S. Women’s Soccer Team Pay Compare to the

Men?" PBS. PBS, 31 Mar. 2016. Web. 21 Sept. 2016. <>.

Comments (4)

Jessica Celli (Student 2018)
Jessica Celli

This didn't change my thinking because I already knew most of this information! However, I think that this paper should be spread to those who don't know this information and need some eye opening to the situation.

Aniya Linder (Student 2018)
Aniya Linder

This has expanded my thinking because there was lots of stuff that I didn't know. I think that you using the wage gap between the female and the male soccer players was a good example.

Gil Rosen (Student 2018)
Gil Rosen

This expanded my thinking because it is a very informational essay that tells me that it is not right for what women are getting paid next to men. Now I see that employers need to change this awful way of paying their employees if they are paying unfair amounts to different kinds of people.