FIFA President Gianni Infantino is targeting an equal pay for men and women in World Cups from 2027.
The football executive has blasted the widening gulf in pay between men and women football.
Infantino partly blamed the disparity on the uncouth practice of broadcast agencies for not paying enough when it comes to women’s football.
According to reports, FIFA are rounding up plans to trigger a sharp pay rise in the 2023 Women’s World Cup. Their prize money will reportedly be increased by 300%.
Also, the planned formatting of the Women’s World Cup from the usual 24-team tournament to a 32-team tournament in 2027 will be backed with £125m, 10 times more than what was earmarked for the 2015 edition.
Breaking down the planned distribution of the funds, Gianni Infantino added that £50m will be dolled out in players’ payment for the tournament in the year’s tournament.
This is still far below the earnings of Men’s World Cup players paid by FIFA but a significant milestone in bridging the pay gap. Infantino insisted by 2027 he will ensure the gap is closed with both tournaments and players entitled to the same amount of payment.
Infantino’s optimism of bringing parity to the pay gap in Men’s and Women’s football may likely be met with some challenges when the widening gap in patronage are evaluated in addition to the sheer magnitude of the gap.
In the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, a total of £365m was dolled out as payment for the Men’s World Cup teams and players highlighting the sheer size of the gap in payments.
However, Gianni Infantino is bent on implementing the plan and has reiterated his resolve to have it done in the next four years when the Women’s World Cup will be held again.
Infantino blasts broadcast agencies for the poor pay
He blamed the widening gulf in payment between the two divides on broadcasters who offer paltry amounts for TV rights.
To curb the low offers by broadcast agencies in this year’s tournament, the Swiss lawyer added FIFA will not sell TV rights to broadcast agencies at current prices.
Speaking after his re-election for another four-year tenure which will last till 2027, Gianni Infantino said women’s football ‘deserve more: and FIFA is ready to do everything possible to buck the trend of low pay.
‘Women deserve much, much more than that and we are there to fight for them and with them.’
The 52-year-old claimed broadcast agencies – some of them public agencies funded by taxpayers’ money – tend to exploit women’s game, offering 100 times less than what they offer in men’s football although women’s football is just 20% – 50% below men’s football in audience.
Infantino said broadcast agencies should make proportionate offers within the 20% to 50% margins instead of going as far below as 100%.