US Soccer opposes USWNT request for class action lawsuit status

US Soccer opposes USWNT request for class action lawsuit status
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The U.S. Women's National Soccer Team's (USWNT) push for the U.S. Soccer Federation (USSF) to implement equal pay practices continued Monday. 

According to The Associated Press, the USSF, America's governing soccer body, filed a motion opposing the USWNT's Sept. 11 request to certify the team's lawsuit as class action.

Class action certification would make the lawsuit include all players called up to the USWNT, not just the ones originally named. The lawsuit was first filed by 28 players in March on International Women's Day. 

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In late June, during the Women's World Cup in France, mediation was agreed upon by both sides, but those talks eventually fell apart in mid-August.

The USWNT won the Women's World Cup for the second time in a row this year, beating the Netherlands 2-0. Overall, the U.S. side has won four Women's World Cups, more than any other team.

The USSF's stance on the issue centers on the argument that four players on the USWNT — Alex Morgan, Megan Rapinoe, Carli Lloyd and Becky Sauerbrunn — made more money than the highest-paid player on the U.S. Men's National Team (USMNT) from 2014-19. 

Molly Levinson, a spokeswoman for the players, responded, “Pay should be based on performance, not gender. USSF tries to spin the undeniable fact that if the men players won their games, they would be paid considerably more than the women are now,”

“This is a tired argument from USSF that women players must work twice as hard and win every time men lose in order to be paid and have the same working conditions as the men," she continued.

The USMNT has historically struggled on the World Cup stage. The team didn't qualify for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia and hasn't made the quarter-finals of the tournament since 2002.

The USMNT has never won a World Cup.

The U.S. District Court will reportedly hear the case in May.