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Equal Pay Day: FIFPRO remains committed to securing equal prize money for players

Equal Pay Day: FIFPRO remains committed to securing equal prize money for players
  • 18 September marks International Equal Pay Day, raising awareness about unequal pay to women and pushing to close the gender pay gap

  • FIFPRO, members unions and women’s internationals helped secure equal regulations and conditions, and a fair redistribution of prize money for Women’s World Cup players

  • While the first step on the pathway to equality has been taken, for many players the fight for fair and timely payment has just begun

On UN Equal Pay Day, FIFPRO reaffirms its commitment to fighting alongside women all over the world to ensure there is equal pay for equal work.

The 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup was a breakthrough on the pathway to equality, with the introduction of per-player performance-based prize money and equal conditions.

Ahead of the Women’s World Cup FIFPRO, its member unions, and 150 international footballers from 25 countries stood united in the largest piece of collective action undertaken in women’s football which helped secure equal regulations and conditions, fair redistribution of prize money to players, and a pathway to equal prize money at the tournament.

The collective action achieved:

1) Player prize money allocation

Each individual player at the Women's World Cup was allocated performance-based funding. Every player at Australia/New Zealand earned at least USD 30,000, with players from the winning team each receiving USD 270,000.

2) Equal conditions

The conditions and service levels offered to each team at the 2023 Women’s World Cup were identical to those at the 2022 men’s World Cup in Qatar.

  • The delegation size for all PMAs was set at up to 50 people;
  • Each delegation had the option of accommodating players in single or twin rooms, or a combination of both, according to their preferences;
  • Identical processes to men's World Cup for class of international travel, level of in-competition domestic travel, implementation of team base camp concepts, and standard of accommodation were in place.

3) Increased prize money

In addition to doubling to USD 31m the preparation funding already distributed to all PMAs, an additional total pot of USD 110m was allocated to the Women’s World Cup Australia & New Zealand 2023 that was distributed to teams on the basis of team performance at the tournament.

The path to equal pay

While the first step on the pathway to equality has been taken, for many players the fight for fair, timely payment has just begun.

That is why, on this UN Equal Pay Day, we celebrate the achievements and progress made, but more importantly we focus on what is ahead – pay equity for the men’s and Women’s World Cup in 2026 and 2027, and continuing to raise the floor for players globally.

What the players said

Alex Morgan (USA): “I'll continue to challenge the systemic norms that exist today, so that we do have an equal seat at the table – and part of that is the working conditions for the World Cup. As the women's game grows, as accessibility and visibility grows, and as our fan base grows, we do expect to see the result of that – which is better working conditions, more compensation. That’s a big piece of it, but we need to start somewhere.”

Lucy Bronze (England): “In every single country in the world, there's still something missing or something that could be done a lot better. The fact we've got that collective goal means that together we feel that common goal – and everybody knows that strength comes in numbers. When we inspire each other, the voice becomes louder."

Ali Riley (New Zealand): "I believe that we as women’s players deserve the same conditions as our male counterparts – and we're working hard to prove that. Having equal pay at the World Cup would be one step in the right direction."

FIFPRO Statement: Spanish football federation president Luis Rubiales

FIFPRO Statement: Spanish football federation president Luis Rubiales

FIFPRO fully endorses the statement of Spanish player union AFE in calling for immediate action to address the conduct of Spanish federation president Luis Rubiales and is calling for investigation of his actions under FIFA’s code of ethics.

We reiterate that it was deeply lamentable that such a special moment for the players of the Spain national team taking place before a global television audience should be stained by the inappropriate conduct of an individual in a role carrying so much responsibility.

Uninitiated and uninvited physical approaches towards players are not appropriate or acceptable in any context, and especially not when they are put in a position of vulnerability by a person who holds a position of power over them in their workplace.

New FIFPRO Asia/Oceania strategic framework lays platform for player impact and legacy across region

New FIFPRO Asia/Oceania strategic framework lays platform for player impact and legacy across region
  • Power to the Players is a comprehensive vision for the transformation of football in Asia/Oceania

  • Aims to channel unprecedented interest in the region, as demonstrated by 2023 Women’s World Cup, by positioning players at the heart of the sport

  • Framework has five key objectives: player organising, member unions, bargaining, diversity, and innovation, data and alliances

FIFPRO Asia/Oceania has launched a new strategic framework for the division: Power to the Players, a comprehensive vision for the transformation of the football industry in the region.

The framework aims to channel the unprecedented interest in the sport in Asia/Oceania, as demonstrated by the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup, by positioning players at the heart of the sport.  

Launched at the division’s bi-annual congress in Auckland, the framework sets forward a path to build on the outstanding efforts of generations of players and member unions by elevating the players’ voice to achieve positive impact.

Designed to play a leading role in supporting FIFPRO’s global reform agenda, the framework has five key objectives:

  • Player Organising and Mobilising: building and embedding a strong culture of organising across the region;
  • Member Unions: enhancing all member unions throughout the region;
  • Bargaining and Leverage: Building effective relationships with strategic partners such as the Asian Football Confederation (AFC);
  • Diversity: Promoting the diversity of FIFPRO Asia/Oceania’s members while pursuing a workplace for players that is free from all forms of discrimination and risks to players’ human rights;
  • Innovation, Data and Alliances: Commitment to proactively shaping the future of Asian and Oceanian football through evidence-based research, analysis and partnerships.

FIFPRO Asia/Oceania Chairman Takuya Yamazaki said: "The 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup has shone a spotlight on the immense talent and potential within Asia and Oceania, whilst also exposing the enormous challenges faced by players. Now, more than ever, it is imperative that we ensure our players are given the support and representation they deserve.

"A legacy of this transformational Women’s World Cup will be stronger representation for all footballers. We plan over the next three years to build stronger unions, enhance player organising and effective relationships to deliver better outcomes for players and the game."

Anna Green, NZPFA's representative on FIFPRO's Asia/Oceania Division board, an-82 time New Zealand international and Sydney FC defender, said: "The interests of the players and the game are inherently linked. Our mission is to enhance all of our unions across Oceania and Asia and ensure that the players’ rights are protected and respected.

"This is the starting point for the players having greater impact and transforming football across the region into a workplace that deeply respects and protects the rights of players."

Download the framework HERE

Players in Australia welcome new deal about working conditions

Security, stability and a more professional working environment, those are the main accomplishments for men and women footballers in Australia enjoy with their new collective deal.

Recently, Professional Footballers Australia (the PFA) and the Australian Professional League announced a new collective bargaining agreement (CBA) for the next five years. Ally Green and Alex Wilkinson were part of the union’s negotiation team. Both players shared their thoughts with FIFPRO about the deal.

Five reasons why Romanian football needs to be fixed


FIFPRO is appalled by the employment situation of professional footballers in Romania and the lack of urgency shown by the country’s football association (FRF) to find adequate solutions for this disturbing situation.

LawInSport Weekly News Roundup - 10 September

LawInSport Weekly News Roundup

Welcome to LawInSport’s weekly News Roundup.  We have curated the top ten news pieces from around the world of sport. For further updates, please visit our news section.

We hope you find this useful. If you have any related questions or feedback, please don’t hesitate to contact us. 


FIFPRO wants to remind clubs and professional football players that it is prohibited to exclude players from the first team through coercive methods.

Two players in the Czech Republic informed player union (CAFH) that they have been separated from the first team squad.

FIFPRO Statement: UEFA decision on additional stoppage time

FIFPRO Statement: UEFA decision on additional stoppage time

FIFPRO Europe, the Professional Footballers’ Association (PFA, England) and the Union Nationale des Footballeurs Professionnels (UNFP, France) welcome UEFA’s decision not to apply the new guidelines around additional stoppage time to European competitions.

This decision shows UEFA have listened to the players and their unions.

"This is an excellent player-centric decision which will make a difference for footballers across Europe," said FIFPRO Europe President and UNFP Vice-President David Terrier. "The fruitful cooperation with UEFA underlines our shared commitment to enhancing player welfare.

This collaborative approach fills us with confidence for the future relationship between UEFA, professional players, and their respective unions.”

PFA CEO and FIFPRO board member Maheta Molango said: “Player workload is the number one issue when I speak to members at clubs who will be competing for club and country. It is totally unsustainable. It’s clear they are having to make really difficult decisions about how to protect their own health and fitness

The comments from Zvonimir Boban [UEFA’s Chief of Football] show that he gets it. From his own experience he understands the player perspective and the fact that this is ultimately a player wellbeing issue. I will keep saying it – we can’t keep pushing the players until they break.”

Eleven tips for dealing with hot conditions in professional football

Eleven tips for dealing with hot conditions in professional football
  • Report released with guidelines and mitigation strategies for hot conditions in professional football

  • Series of studies show national team players unanimously agreed that hot and humid conditions made performance difficult during matches

  • Eleven 'Hot Tips' that should be considered by governing bodies, competition organisers, and more to better protect players’ health

FIFPRO has released a report with guidelines and mitigation strategies for hot conditions in professional football.

Following several high-profile international competitions played in hot conditions, a series of cross-sectional studies showed that national team players and managers unanimously agreed that hot and humid conditions made performance difficult during these matches.

The report contains 11 ‘Hot Tips’ that should be considered by governing bodies, competition organisers, clubs, staff members and players to better protect players’ health.

The human body maintains a constant core temperature that usually ranges from 36.1°C to 37.8°C – and in extreme heat, players are at risk of suffering from heat-stress disorders such as heat cramps, heat exhaustion or heat strokes,” said FIFPRO’s Chief Medical Officer Prof Dr Vincent Gouttebarge.

To prevent or mitigate this risk and thus to protect players’ performance and health, better guidelines relying on the Wet Bulb Globe Temperature (WBGT), or on the ambient temperature, should be implemented and enforced.”

FIFPRO’s position on extreme heat

At present, FIFA guidelines state that if there is a WGBT of more than 32°C (89.6°F) cooling breaks are mandatory in both halves of a match, around the 30th minute and 75th minute. The decision on whether to suspend or cancel the match is at the discretion of competition organisers.

FIFPRO believes that these guidelines do not do enough to protect the health and performance of players and recommend among other things that if there is a WBGT between 28-32°C, cooling breaks should take place around the 30th minute and 75th minute. If there is a WBGT of more than 32°C, training and matches should be rescheduled.

FIFPRO’s 11 Hot Tips

  1. Heat guidelines should be adopted and respected by football stakeholders, clubs and national teams for matches and training and embedded within regulations (e.g., minimum medical requirements, laws of the games, collective bargaining agreement for national competitions; FIFA competition regulations, social dialogue).

  2. Heat guidelines should refer to thresholds for WBGT (especially in elite professional football) and ambient (in case a WBGT measurement device is unavailable) temperature to increase their understanding and global implementation across all levels of professional football.

  3. A WBGT above 26°C (or ambient temperature above 30°C) should warrant cooling breaks during matches (e.g., at approximately 30 minutes in each half of a match).

  4. A WBGT above 28°C (or ambient temperature above 36°C) should lead to the delay or postponement of matches until conditions for players and officials (and fans) are safer.

  5. WBGT (and/or ambient temperature) should be measured on-site before each match and training session (e.g., two hours), and consultation between key stakeholders (e.g., players, coaches, match officials, team physicians) about potential risks should occur.

  6. National and local weather forecasts should monitor the weather conditions (e.g., at least five days before each match) and estimate potential hot conditions to schedule matches (and training) optimally and provide players with a safe environment.

  7. Next to additional cooling breaks, other mitigation strategies (e.g., heat acclimation/acclimatisation, cooling methods, easy availability of cool drinks all around the football field) should be planned and used for matches and training, with responsibility for their implementation resting with teams and individuals involved.

  8. Stakeholders (international, continental, national) and television broadcasting companies should not schedule matches at the hottest time of day, that means avoiding mid-day or afternoon matches (i.e., full sunshine) where high WBGT is most likely.

  9. A (inter)national registry of heat-related collapses and/or deaths should be developed to assess their prevalence, explore the underlying contributing factors, and improve existing guidelines and mitigation strategies.

  10. While players’ responses (e.g., physiological, cognitive) when exercising in hot conditions have been extensively studied, more research is needed to understand (i) how thresholds (WBGT and/or ambient temperature) in heat guidelines could evolve, (ii) how mitigation strategies, including potential modification of the laws of the game and heat acclimation/acclimatisation, could be optimally implemented and enforced in practice, and (iii) how new technologies might enable the assessment of personal factors (e.g., metabolic rate, thermoregulatory function) and contribute to the prediction of the risk of heat-related illnesses.

  11. Particular attention should be given to female and youth players with regard to individual responses when exercising in hot conditions or when it comes to avoiding television broadcasts of their matches at mid-day or in the afternoon (i.e., full sunshine).

First findings from 10-year Drake Football Study published

First findings from 10-year Drake Football Study published
  • Launched in 2019, Drake Football Study is a 10-year project tracking the physical and mental health of footballers

  • Over 170 men’s and women’s players were included in the study, beginning during their playing careers and transitioning through to retirement

  • Dr Lervasen Pillay, one of the PhD candidates working on the study, talks to FIFPRO about the first published data connected to knee and hip osteoarthritis in men’s players

The first data results from the 10-year Drake Football Study have now been published. Launched in 2019, the Drake Football Study is tracking the physical and mental health of around 170 men’s and women’s footballers – beginning during their playing careers and transitioning through to retirement.

The project’s first findings, based on studies on men’s professional footballers, showed a low prevalence of knee and hip osteoarthritis (degeneration of joint cartilage); that pain is a valid symptom to suggest osteoarthritis presence; and that the chances of developing knee osteoarthritis increased with the number of injuries by 1.5 times and just over four times more with surgeries.

"This is good news for footballers as further research now can be done on developing management guidelines and determining if any other risk factors for osteoarthritis exist in this population," said Dr Lervasen Pillay, who has been practicing in the field of sports medicine for 19 years and has been involved in the Drake Football Study since October 2021.

Most previous research in knee and hip osteoarthritis has been conducted on retired athletes using only X-rays, whereas these latest findings have been determined using validated questionnaires and clinical examinations on active players.  

"New information is always helpful to stimulate further research," said Dr Pillay. "It gives us a better understanding of the association of osteoarthritis with risk factors (like injury and surgery), pain and function in the active professional footballer.

"In the real-world setting, this translates into providing clinicians with more information to allow for improved management of their athlete’s condition – in this case osteoarthritis."

Learning from the players

The former Chief Medical Officer of the South African Premier Soccer League, Dr Pillay’s involvement in the Drake Football Study stems from his combined PhD with the University of Pretoria and University of Amsterdam.

While the 10-year study is giving priority to joint pain in ankles, hips and knees of players, and how it can potentially impact the wellbeing of players in the long-term, it also aims to explore mental health symptoms such as anxiety and depression which are often reported by players.

"Part of this study is to identify whether there is an association between mental health symptoms and severe injuries and surgeries," said Dr Pillay, who has been monitoring the analysis of men’s players during the study.

"The mental health component of professional male footballers has always been neglected. Through the study, we will be able to collect data on the prevalence and incidence of mental health symptoms and learn if there are associations with risk factors of players developing mental health symptoms."

Coordinated by FIFPRO, the Drake Football Study is seed-funded by The Drake Foundation and supported by Amsterdam University Medical Centres, Mehiläinen (Finland) and Push Sports (The Netherlands).

FIFPRO Chief Medical Officer Prof Dr Vincent Gouttebarge is the project lead together with Prof Dr Gino Kerkhoffs, chair of the Orthopedic Surgery and Sports Medicine department at the Amsterdam University Medical Centres.

As well as the length of the research and its focus on active players during their careers and transitioning through to retirement, what also sets the study apart is learning directly from the players.

"We are exploring data received from players themselves – the athletes voice is vital," said Dr Pillay. "The study also involves cohorts which aren’t European based, which helps give a global perspective.

"Since all the sub-studies are investigating the active professional footballers, it provides an opportunity for developing better identification and management guidelines of certain conditions.

"Studies looking at neurocognitive function and ankle cartilage may provide new information that has not been described in this population before, and thus begin a new research interest angle. I am excited about the entire project and its potential impact over the next 10 years."

FIFPRO to host football governance forum in Brussels

  • With major decisions ahead, event brings together player unions and leagues
  • FIFPRO’s Jonas Baer-Hoffmann to call for urgent remodeling of football governance
  • Premier League, Eredivisie and Superliga among stakeholders participating

FIFPRO and UEFA join forces to fight match-fixing


FIFPRO and UEFA have signed a joint cooperation agreement that recognises the Red Button whistleblowing app as the go-to platform for professional footballers to report possible match-fixing incidents. 

FIFPRO Americas division makes organisational changes


FIFPRO’s division in the Americas has made organisational changes with a view to strengthening the representation of professional footballers across the region. The division is also taking another step towards becoming more diverse and inclusive after two women were elected to its regional board.

FIFPRO calls for proper negotiation on reforms of international match calendar


FIFPRO today stresses once again that any plans to change the men’s or women’s International Match Calendar must address the players’ concerns such as an expanding workload at the top of the game, the need to protect and improve jobs for the majority of our members around the world and protecting the promising advancement of the women’s professional game. Proposals isolating further expansions such as a biennial World Cup – as well as other competition reforms under discussion – are inadequate in the absence of solutions for existing problems. Without the agreement of the players, who bring all competitions to life on the pitch, no such reforms will have the required legitimacy.

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