13 March 2020

US Soccer Federation President Carlos Cordeiro resigns over 'offensive' statements about female players

Carlos Cordeiro has quit as President of the US Soccer Federation after 'offensive' language was used in legal papers concerning the women's football team's equal pay case.

Documents referred to them as 'less skilled' and said they 'had fewer responsibilities than their male colleagues'.

The 64 year-old broke the news on Twitter saying he was taking responsibility for US Soccer’s misogynistic criticism of its women’s national team.

US Soccer are in the midst of a gender discrimination battle with the women's side and the legal papers were submitted to federal court in Los Angeles as part of their defence. 

The female players claim they have not been paid equally to the men and have demanded more than $66 million in damages under the Equal Pay Act and the Civil Rights Act of 1964 . The trial is set to take place on May 5.

Cordeiro wrote: "My one and only mission has always been to do what is best for our Federation, and it has become clear to me that what is best right now is a new direction.

"The arguments and language contained in this week's legal filing caused great offense and pain, especially to our extraordinary Women's National Team players who deserve better. 

"It was unacceptable and inexcusable. I did not have the opportunity to fully review the filing in its entirety before it was submitted, and I take responsibility for not doing so. 

"Had I done so, I would have objected to language that did not reflect my personal admiration for our women's players or our values as an organisation."

The document, released on Monday, resulted in a number of big-name sponsors, including Coca Cola, Deloitte and Volkswagen, slamming the federation.

The car manufacturer released a statement calling it 'simply unacceptable' and saying they were 'disgusted' by the the positions taken in the document.

Cordeiro said US Soccer's legal strategy and the language it used in the gender discrimination lawsuit was ultimately on his shoulders and deemed it 'unacceptable and inexcusable'.

Carlos Cordeiro has quit as President of the US Soccer Federation

It was not just sponsors who were outspoken against the lawsuit. The US Women's team turned their shirts inside out to cover the US Logo when they took to the pitch for their match against Japan in the SheBelieves Cup this week.

The women's players' spokeswoman Molly Levinson said: “While it is gratifying that there has been such a deafening outcry against USSFs blatant misogyny, the sexist culture and policies overseen by Carlos Cordeiro have been approved for years by the board of directors of USSF.

“This institution must change and support and pay women players equally." 

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