Gender equality in football - how we negotiated equal rights for the Matildas & Socceroos

Published 13 December 2019 By: John Didulica, Kathryn Gill

Womens Football

In November this year, Football Federation Australia (FFA) and the Professional Footballers Australia (PFA) reached a landmark deal[1] for a new Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) that closes the pay gap between Australia’s National Teams, the Socceroos and the Matildas.  The deal has been widely hailed as a significant step forward for equal rights in football and praised for its progressive approach to gender equality.

This article explains the principles that the authors drew upon when negotiating the CBA, and how those principles were used as framework to build out the key constituent parts of the deal. Specifically, it looks at:

  • The concept of Jämställdhet” – Sweden’s progressive ideology on equality and gender discrimination developed in the 1970s;
  • Translating the concept of “progressive equality” into professional (team) sport;
  • Using “progressive equality” to negotiate the National Team CBA;
    • The Remuneration Model
    • The Performance Model
    • The Commercial Model
  • Next steps: universal application


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John Didulica

John Didulica

Chief Executive, Professional Footballers Australia
John is the Chief Executive of Professional Footballers Australia.  
He holds BA, LLM from the University of Melbourne
Kathryn Gill

Kathryn Gill

Deputy Chief Executive,  Professional Footballers Australia

Kathryn is the Deputy Chief Executive of Professional Footballers Australia and the former Matildas captain
She holds BSc, BBus, and MBA (pending).