A lawyer representing the employers of the US women's soccer team has actually argued that female footballers should be paid less because they are "less skilled" than men.
This emerged during a court filing on Monday, over an argument for equal pay for female athletes. US Soccer is trying to prove that they have not discriminated against their female stars who won last year's World Cup.
According to a report by BuzzFeed, showed that lawyers court documents argued under the Equal Pay act that:
The job of a [men’s national team player] carries more responsibility within US Soccer than the job of a [women’s national team] player.
It was also claimed that there were biological differences and "indisputable science" that showed women athletes should be paid less than men as the men's game apparently requires more skill than the women's game.
It was also argued that male football can often attract more aggressive and hostile crowds than the women's game, thus placing great stress and pressure upon the men.
Top stars from the women's team, including Alex Morgan and Carli Lloyd were questioned as part of the filing with Lloyd being asked "Do you think that the team could be competitive against the senior men’s national team?"
In response, the 37-year-old who has scored 123 goals for the United States said:
I’m not sure. Shall we fight it out to see who wins and then we get paid more?
As it currently stands the women's team are asking for $67 million in dames, which they are claiming is because US Soccer is in violation of the US Equal Pay Act, which was introduced in 1963.
The trial is not set to begin until May but Megan Rapinoe, the captain of the US women's team, has criticised the timing of the court filing, which came just the day before She Believes Cup, which the US host every year around International Women's Day. Speaking on Sunday, Rapinoe said:
I mean, the timing of it on the eve of not only a game, but in this tournament and on the eve of International Women’s Day. I guess if that’s how you want to celebrate International Women’s Day and show support for not only your players, but future players and girls all over the place, that’s one way to do it.
Carlos Cordeiro has said that the women's team rejected an equal pay offer that was in line with what the men earn but the lawyers of the women's team said that this was an offer based on the totals that the men were earning in 2011.
US women's soccer matches, on average, generate more revenue than the men's matches, especially as the men failed to qualify for the last World Cup in 2018.
US women have won the World Cup four times, while the best finish that the US men have ever achieved at their respective World Cup is third place way back in 1930, a tournament that featured just 13 teams.