As the United States women's national team has continued to be one of the top women's soccer programs in the world, just as public and well-documented as their on-field triumphs has been their fight to be paid at a level equal to that of their male counterparts.
Such public jousting over financial matters has become a major storyline in soccer yet again, as the U.S. Soccer Federation has reportedly offered the players' unions for both the men's and women's teams identical proposals for a new Collective Bargaining Agreement, according to ESPN.
Between proposals in CBA negotiations and a recent request by U.S. Soccer that the two teams' unions equalize the allocation of prize money from the FIFA World Cup, there is some reason to believe the ongoing conflict between U.S. Soccer and the women's national team -- which has had 28 players sue the organization alleging gender discrimination -- over the matter of equal pay may soon be settled
USWNT star Alex Morgan expressed as much in comments made on Wednesday, stating that players were cautiously optimistic about the federation's proposals.
"We don't want to start the new year without a new CBA in effect, so that's the No. 1 priority of our PA, of our legal team," Morgan said, according to a report by ESPN. "Looking at the (USSF) statements, it's difficult to say, we want to feel encouraged and we want to be optimistic, but we have seen a lot of statements before.
"What we really want to do is see what we can do at the negotiation table, see those statements be put into action in those negotiations. So of course we're always hopeful. Under the new proposal put forward by the USSF, it said it also wouldn't agree to a CBA with either team that didn't take the important step of equalizing FIFA World Cup prize money."
Prize money from the FIFA World Cup has become the latest point of contention between the federation and the women's team, as USSF president Cindy Parlow Cone sent an open letter calling upon the men's team to re-allocate a portion of their FIFA World Cup Payments to the women's team.
However, the union for the USWNT has rejected several claims made in the letter, accusing the federation of engaging in a "publicity stunt" as opposed to addressing their grievances.
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