U.S. Soccer president says he is in favor of pay equity plan

Hope Solo to object to U.S. Soccer equal pay deal

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U.S. Soccer president Sunil Gulati has been busy since he took over in January 2009 – he’s signed and fired almost half the team’s executives and promoted nearly 50 other employees.

Gulati, 69, who announced last week that he would retire after the current season, said he wanted to stay on and oversee the organization as it approaches its 30th anniversary.

He has made U.S. Soccer a top priority even though the federation has been hit by a series of scandals, including a bribery investigation that led to the dismissal of coach Jurgen Klinsmann, general manager Peter Wilt, and former vice president Carlos Cordeiro.

Gulati said he is in favor of a pay equity plan that has been proposed by the U.S. Congress. But he said there is no evidence that the federation is guilty of corruption.

The U.S. soccer federation has come under fire for paying female coaches significantly less than their male counterparts.

The Equal Pay Enforcement Alliance filed an arbitration complaint with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in August, saying female soccer coaches receive less than what their men counterparts get. The filing noted that the average starting salary for a female professional soccer coach is $80,000, while the average starting salary for a male coach is $144,000.

Gulati said he has talked with Sunil Darshan, who led the women’s national team to victories in the 1999 and 2003 world championships, and that he did not think the pay disparity exists.

“I think it is a sad situation and something that needs to be corrected,” said Gulati, who announced last month that he is retiring after the current season.

“But in this case, there

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