Hope Solo to object to U.S. Soccer equal pay deal as she prepares to leave, ‘I support the women’s game’
U.S. women’s national soccer team forward Abby Wambach speaks during the 2018 FIFA Women’s World Cup in France on Sept. 15, 2018. (Reuters / Omar Havana)
As the U.S. women’s national team celebrated a World Cup title with a victory over China in the final on Sunday, Abby Wambach announced her retirement amid a media storm.
“I am not going to be a football player forever,” she told USA Today. “I have reached that conclusion for myself.”
She will end her playing career after playing in the women’s game in an era of growing gender equality, when she was paid about $13,000 less than a male player in the same position, according to USA Today. Wambach, a three-time Olympic gold-medal winner who also competed in the World Cup, is now making $2.9 million, according to Forbes.
Her retirement announcement comes after the men’s national team beat Canada to win the 2019 Women’s World Cup championship. The U.S. men won the last-place playoff game against Mexico, which beat Germany in the finals.
U.S. women’s national soccer team forward Alex Morgan, left, talks with goalkeeper Hope Solo before the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup match between the U.S. and Panama at the Stanford Stadium in Stanford, Calif., on July 26, 2015. (Mike Blake/Reuters)
Solo expressed similar concerns. “When I first started playing soccer it was always about me,” she told USA Today. “When I decided to retire it was really about the opportunity for the next generation to play. If I was playing today, I’d want someone who can come in and play and be a leader on both the men’s and women’s side of the game.”
Meanwhile, U.S. Soccer began its own review of the Wambach-Mills deal and the women’s national team’s equal pay policy.