Senator Joe Manchin introduced a bill Tuesday preventing the federal government from providing funding for the 2026 FIFA World Cup until the United States Soccer Federation agrees to equal pay for its men’s and women’s national teams.
“No federal funds may be appropriated or otherwise made available to provide support for the 2026 World Cup, including support for a host city, a participating State or local agency, the United States Soccer Federation, the Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF), or the Federation de Football Association (FIFA), until the date on which the United States Soccer Federation agrees to provide equitable pay,” the bill reads.
In March, 28 members of the US women’s national team filed lawsuit against the US Soccer Federation accusing US Soccer of gender discrimination.
On Sunday, the US Women’s National Team (USWNT) won the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup with a 2-0 victory over the Netherlands. The USWNT never trailed during the tournament and beat the second, third and fourth place teams on its way the title.
After the final, the crowd at the Parc Olympique Lyonnais in Lyon chanted “equal pay” during the post-match celebration.
Manchin received a letter from West Virginia’s women’s soccer coach Nikki Izzo-Brown about the equal pay discussion, prompting Manchin to propose the bill.
“The clear unequitable pay between the US men’s and women’s soccer teams is unacceptable and I’m glad the US Women’s Soccer Team latest victory is causing public outcry,” Manchin said in a statement. “They are the best in the world and deserve to be paid accordingly.”