USWNT Players to earn several millions due to FIFA Women's World Cup
The GIST: The USWNT Players Association (USWNTPA) is scoring financial golazos. A recent report projects that the players’ union will earn several million dollars this year from multiple revenue streams, largely due to the upcoming FIFA Women’s World Cup (WWC).
The context: In 2017, the players won name, image, and likeness (NIL) rights through their collective bargaining agreement with the U.S. Soccer Federation (USSF) and now receive royalties from official USSF merch sales. The USWNTPA also strikes its own licensing deals and collects revenue from the online shop it launched last year.
- Players collectively earn low-to-mid five figures from these avenues, far less than their national team salaries and eventual WWC bonuses, but the program is designed to be a “significant source of passive income” for athletes.
The numbers: After winning its fourth WWC in 2019, the USWNT pocketed almost $1M in royalty payments that year. Execs at the union and its licensing partner OneTeam expect that figure to at least double this year, while some anticipate that royalties could be four times what the USWNTPA scored just four years ago.
- The final tally may hinge on the reigning champ’s performance at July’s WWC, but financial expectations are high — OneTeam exec Ricky Medina believes royalties from jersey sales alone will be five times more than last year. Cha-ching.
The store: The USWNTPA store allows players to earn proceeds from official gear, while NIL rights also permit the union to ink other licensing deals. It currently has 38 agreements across several merchandise categories, from apparel brands like Dick’s Sporting Goods and BreakingT to collectibles companies like Panini and Parkside.
Zooming out: Since acquiring athletes’ NIL rights in 2017, the USWNTPA has successfully turned the team’s on-field success into off-field returns. The union’s financial windfall provides further evidence of the demand for women’s sports merch and demonstrates the USWNT’s immense branding appeal. Power to the people.