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U.S. Soccer targeted by women players: Why are men paid more?

Anyone seeking to justify the above-cited reality in today's blog entry headline might have a hard time doing so in light of stark empirical evidence.

To wit: While the American men's national team has won virtually nothing of consequence since its inception, the women's team has won, well, everything.

And more than once, with a recent New York Times article calling the squad "a quadrennial phenomenon" for its multiple Olympic and world championship victories.

Readers who are into sports at all likely remember the outsized performances the women delivered last year while decimating rivals en route to their third World Cup championship. The Times notes that the squad's spanking of opponents was on full view before a progressively entranced nation audience, "bringing much of the country to a standstill" while games were in progress.

Given such popularity, and notwithstanding recent off-the-charts viewership ratings, why are America's top female soccer players paid just a fraction of what their male peers receive?

That is what those players want to know, and they are pressing for answers via a gender-based employment discrimination complaint they submitted last week to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

The filing was signed by five of the country's apex stars, including Carli Lloyd, Alex Morgan and Hope Solo. The players say that their grievance applies to every member of the team.

Male players on the national team "get paid more to just show up than we get paid to win major championships," said Solo.

Although U.S. Soccer pushed back immediately with a response questioning the players' claims, it cited a willingness to negotiate pay matters in a new collective bargaining pact.

The details await. Solo and her teammates will obviously be subjecting them to a laser-like scrutiny.

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