LOS ANGELES, CA --The U.S. Women's Soccer Team is asking for nearly $67 million dollars in back pay and punitive charges. Lawyers for the team and the U.S. Soccer Federation (USSF) filed motions last week.
USSF attorneys asked for the U.S. District Court in California to dismiss the charges. The Federation argues that the men's and women's teams are represented by separate unions and negotiated separate agreements.
The players counter by saying the Equal Pay Act says they cannot give up their right to equal pay through union negotiations.
Meanwhile, American men’s soccer coach Gregg Berhalter earned nearly as much from the U.S. Soccer Federation in his first four months than women’s counterpart Jill Ellis took home in 12.
Berhalter, hired on Dec. 2, 2018, had compensation of $304,113 from the USSF in the year ending last March 31, according to the tax return released by the federation on Wednesday. That figure included a $200,000 signing bonus.
Ellis, who became women's coach in May 2014, had compensation of $390,409 in the fiscal year. She went on to lead the Americans to their second straight World Cup title, was voted FIFA Women's Coach of the Year, then left in October. Any bonus she earned as a result of the title likely will be listed on the next year's tax return.
Her base salary was raised to $500,000 in late 2018, a person with knowledge of her contract told The Associated Press. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the USSF has not announced that.
The USSF has said she was the highest-paid women's coach in the world.