Four unnamed sources revealed that Canada Soccer could not adequately compensate players because of a contract it had with Canada Soccer Business (CSB). This company keeps a large portion of the revenue generated from the national teams.
Canada Soccer stated to CNN that ongoing negotiations with the national soccer teams have no impact on the CSB agreement voted for and approved by our Board.
“The CSB agreement does not contain any clause regarding player competition prize money. Both matters are distinct,” Paulo Senra of Canada Soccer told CNN via email.
Canada Soccer has not commented to CNN regarding allegations that they were being criticized for their governance practices.
Sport Canada provides funding for Canada’s national sport organizations, including Canada Soccer.
In the statement, it was stated that an investigation would be necessary to investigate the motivations of those involved with the agreement with CSB as well as examine the reasons why the agreement remained in effect when Board members allegedly expressed concerns.
Both national teams requested to be “properly consult” with the governing body when they made key decisions that would have an impact on them.
CNN reported Senra’s statement that a board meeting was held on March 27, 2018. The members reviewed and discussed the CSB agreement before they met and then approved it.
According to the federation, “fairness” and “pay equity” were priorities in ongoing negotiations with players after it previously engaged its women’s and men’s national teams separately on contract negotiations.
Negotiations with the men’s national team are ongoing, according to the federation. A revised offer was made on 23 June. The statement said that “the same offer is before our Women’s National Team.”
The players stated that the statement tried to “put a positive spin on the article” and “fails…” to confirm that Canada Soccer will immediately release its books and records, and fix its transparency issues on a going-forward basis.
It said: “Since Canada Soccer doesn’t acknowledge any problems in its governance or leadership it does not commit itself to addressing any of these problems.”
Canada’s men will be participating in the World Cup in Qatar this November and December after qualifying for the biggest tournament in football for the first time since 1986.
FIFA, the world’s governing body of football, has allocated $440million in prize money. Each team that is eliminated in the group stages will be given $9 million, and each country competing in the tournament will receive $1.5m to help with preparation costs. The prize money for the winners is $42 million.
Due to a dispute over compensation of players, the men’s national team went on strike in June ahead of a friendly against Panama.
TSN’s Westhead posted an open letter on Twitter by the men’s team. It stated that they want 40 percent of the World Cup prize money, a friend and family travel package, and an “equitable” structure with the women’s national teams. This would include the sharing of player match fees, percentages of the prize money at each FIFA World Cup, and the development and operation of a women’s domestic league.
Canada Soccer stated Wednesday that such demands are “untenable” due to the federation’s commitment of paying the women’s national soccer the same percentage as men for major tournaments. Canada Soccer stated that it was committed to finding a solution.
Senra, Canada Soccer’s spokesperson, wrote to CNN Thursday that Senra, the newly appointed General Secretary, had offered to meet with the women’s soccer team and representatives from Mexico following the Concacaf W Championships. This qualifies for the 2023 Women’s World Cup, and the 2024 Paris Olympics.
“We will continue to be committed in open and transparent discussions with both our Teams with a view to finding a resolution that is based upon the values of fairness, equal pay, and other principles,” he said.