March 13 – US Soccer president Carlos Cordeiro has resigned following the furious criticism of the language used in its legal filing in the suit brought against it by its women’s team.
The equal pay and gender discrimination lawsuit was filed last year by 28 members of the United States women’s national team.
In the court documents filed by US Soccer it argued that “it is undisputed that the job of [Men’s National Team] player requires materially more strength and speed than the job of [Women’s National Team] player” in a bid to convince a federal court in California to dismiss a discrimination lawsuit filed by members of the US 2019 World-Cup winning team. The filing also stated that “the job of MNT players carries more responsibility than the job of a WNT player.”
Cordeiro (pictured right with US women’s star Megan Rapinoe) said he was ultimately responsible for U.S. Soccer’s legal strategy and that the language in the federation’s court documents, made public late Monday, 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,” Cordeiro said in his resignation letter that he posted on his Twitter account.
“My one and only mission has been to do what is best for the federation, and it has become clear to me that what is best 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,” said Cordeiro.
He also said that if he had read the document he would have objected to the wording that “did not reflect my personal admiration for the women’s players or our values as a federation.”
USSF vice president Cindy Parlow Cone will take over as interim president.
In the end the pressure was too great for Cordeiro to continue. On Wednesday the women players took the field against Japan with their jerseys on inside-out — hiding the U.S. Soccer crest.
Five of U.S. Soccer’s biggest sponsors — Coca-Cola, Volkswagen, Budweiser, Visa and Deloitte — have also spoken out against the USSF’s filing with Volkswagen saying that it was “disgusted” by the positions taken, calling them “simply unacceptable.”
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