When you think of America’s sport, you think of football or basketball, some people would even say baseball or golf. One sport that sometimes gets overlooked by Americans is soccer. As a soccer fan, it’s unfortunate to think that the amazing sport gets overlooked as much as it does. More people would rather attend the Super Bowl or the NBA’s championship games instead of a major league soccer championship game. More people know who wins football, basketball and baseball games, but players aren’t as well-known when soccer enters the conversation.
Not only is soccer not talked about enough, but there are also aspects of the sport that are sometimes completely ignored and overlooked. It’s been a long-time conversation, but the salary difference between men and women in sports hasn’t gotten the coverage it needs. Women in soccer are not taken as a joke, like other sports, but they aren’t paid as much or given enough recognition for doing the same thing men do.
In June 2019, Forbes magazine named the world’s highest-paid soccer players after the recent season ended and no one was surprised when the list was predominantly male.
Christina Settimi, the author of the article, discussed two known soccer players: Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. “For the second year in a row, Messi takes the top spot among the world’s highest-paid soccer players,” Settimi wrote, “with earnings of $127 million.” The article doesn’t mention a woman at all.
Women’s soccer goes unknown in the sports world and the evidence is clear when you ask yourself to name one professional woman soccer player who isn’t Mia Hamm. Research for the top paid soccer player showed that Alex Morgan, a power forward for the United States national soccer team, is only paid $450,000 a year with a net worth of $3 million. To compare with Ronaldo, who has a net worth of $450 million, it is clear that women are underpaid in soccer.
Morgan is proof that women can play as good as, maybe even better, than the men in soccer and she, with the rest of the United States national team, proved that in the last Fifa Women’s World Cup. Morgan helped the team in each round, scoring five goals in the first round against Thailand and then became the first woman to score a world cup goal on her birthday against England in a win of 2-1.
She went on to help win a penalty in the final game against the Netherlands, that allowed fellow team player, Megan Rapinoe, to score the winning goal. Morgan was awarded the tournament’s, Silver Boot. With her stats in the positive in just these few games, Morgan should be paid as much as any male soccer player.
Women’s soccer should be recognized more and get better coverage than it does. The country and the world should be better informed on what is going on with these amazing young women and the salary difference compared to the men.