But US Soccer and the US Women's National Team Players Association have now reached a collective bargaining agreement through to 2021. The terms of the deal were not immediately clear.
The U.S. Women's Nation Team came to terms on a new labor agreement with U.S. Soccer, it was announced Wednesday morning. U.S. Soccer will pay the NWSL salaries of full-time national team players, who in turn are committed to playing in the NWSL. At the same time that the USWNT was announcing their new CBA, the Irish national soccer team went on strike - and while doing so revealed the conditions in which they've been working, which include changing in toilets for games and having to share tracksuits with the junior national program.
USA national team veteran Megan Rapinoe said she was "incredibly proud" of the women's team throughout the process. Meghan Klingenberg, the national team full-back and a union representative, said: "I'm proud of the tireless work that the players and our bargaining team put in to promote the game and ensure a bright future for American players".
The labor impasse between the U.S. women's national team players association and U.S. Soccer is over.
This is a big step in the right direction, but as Das notes, the deal doesn't ensure the women will be paid the same amount as the men. The ratification of a new deal ends over a year of negotiations, including over 20 meetings in the past two months.
The US team have been one of the powerhouses of women's football for decades, winning a record third World Cup title in 2015 following wins in 1991 and 1999. "The men haven't enjoyed anywhere near the same level of success as the women - having never advanced further than the quarterfinals in any World Cup since 1930 - and consequently they don't generate the same level of money; their projected revenue for 2017 is $9 million, a little more than half that of the women's team".
The agreement also has "enhanced "lifestyle" benefits for the players with respect to travel and hotels, per diems that are equal to those of the men's team; and greater financial support for players who are pregnant and players adopting a child", per Sports Illustrated.
There has been no decision issued in the EEOC complaint, which was brought by Sauerbrunn, Hope Solo, Alex Morgan, Megan Rapinoe and Carli Lloyd.
They added, "We are proud of the hard work and commitment to thoughtful dialogue reflected through this process, and look forward to strengthening our partnership moving forward". The looming start of the N.W.S.L. season might have provided another needed nudge; most of the national team plays in the league, with their salaries covered by U.S. Soccer through their annual contracts with the federation.