NEW YORK (AP) – While the US men’s national team is fighting to return to the World Cup, a fight is taking place behind the scenes of the American football leadership.
Carlos Cardeira is trying to oust Cindy Parlow Cohn, who took over as president of the US Football Federation in March 2020, when Cardeira resigned amid legal allegations that women’s national team players have less physical ability and responsibility than their counterparts. -men. The USSF National Council is scheduled for March 5 to vote on a four-year term.
“Members from all over the federation approached me with concerns about the direction of American football and asked me to run, I think, in a nutshell, feeling ignored, neglected, marginalized,” Cardeira said in an interview with The Associated Press.
The documents say that the women “ignored the significantly higher level of speed and strength required to perform the work of an MNT player.” Cordeira said he had not read them in advance.
“When I took office, it was a toxic environment for American football,” Cohen said in a separate AP interview. “The players were angry at us. Sponsors were angry with us, threatened to leave. “
The USSF Athletic Council receives one-third of the vote, the Youth, Adult and Professional Council 20% each, and the remaining delegates 6.7%.
Alan Rothenberg, president of the USSF in 1990-98, supports Cone.
“She’s doing a great job, and I just can’t understand how Carlos had the courage to come back after all he did,” Rothenberg said. “When he resigned, besides, the players were outraged – and I don’t think that will change; I think now the outrage will be even greater – said sponsors, which is quite rare.
Bob Contigulia, president of the USSF from 1998-2006, supports Cordeira, citing Cordeira’s business and ties to FIFA and CONCACAF, the governing body of North and Central America and the Caribbean.
“Cindy is a great person, but I’m not sure she has the tools to work at such a high level,” Contigulia said. “I don’t think Carlos is misogynistic. …. I think the women’s team and women in general are promoting (this) to get an image, to gain an advantage in their litigation. “
Serious problems at the organization, which reported revenue of just under $ 65 million for the year ended March 31, compared to $ 138 million in the previous fiscal year before the pandemic.
The men’s team played under an employment contract, which expired in December 2018, and the deal with the women’s team ends on March 31. The players of the women’s team sued under the Equal Pay Act, reaching an agreement on working conditions.
The USSF hired former Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates in October to investigate allegations of abuse and sexual behavior in women’s professional football.
And while the federation is approaching a new agreement on the rights to broadcast home games that it controls, CONCACAF has allowed it to broadcast away matches among its high-profile men’s World Cup qualifiers only with a narrow distribution in the US.
CEO Will Wilson was hired by the USSF board in 2020 and runs the organization. The president has influence, but has no final say.
Cardeira, 65, was a partner at Goldman Sachs during his career at the company from 1990 to 2016 and joined the USSF board as an independent director in 2007. After American men failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup, then-President Sunil Gulati decided not to run for a fourth four-year term, and Cardeira withdrew eight candidates to win in February 2018, backed by the Athletes Council in the first two votes. then in the third – in the Premier Football League, the National Women’s Football League and the United Football League.
The 43-year-old Coon was a midfielder who scored 75 goals in 158 international matches from 1995 to 2006. She coached the Portland Thornes in 2013, and since 2018 has held the position of FC North Carolina’s youth director in Kerry. In February 2019, she was elected for one year as Vice President of the USSF and then re-elected for a four-year term.
On the night of March 12, 2020, she was at a USSF conference when someone on the line said Cordeira had announced her resignation on Twitter. Last winter Shyshka was not opposed for an extra year.
Cordeira from Miami remained on the USSF board as the last president until his resignation in September, when he was hired by FIFA as an unpaid senior adviser on global strategy and governance.
Both candidates are in favor of concluding similar employment contracts with men and women, which would cover the key issue of World Cup prize money, the basis for the bonuses of American players. FIFA paid $ 400 million for the men’s tournament in 2018 and $ 38 million for the women’s in 2019. Individual unions are not required to negotiate together.
“American football will not join the new CBA unless the prize money for the World Cup is leveled,” Cone said.
Cordeira promised to receive new commercial income to level the bonus structure.
Both say they will have no role in choosing venues for the national team games, and both prefer staff in coaching service.
The amendment to the charter, which will be considered at the annual general meeting, provides for the transformation of the presidency from an unpaid position to a job with an annual salary of $ 125,000.
“Is this volunteer-led organization ready to accept this?” Said Cordeira. “What is the role of the president versus the role of the CEO? There were not enough discussions. “
Cordeira said the U.S. should host the next Women’s World Cup, hold an extended Club World Cup, and apply for indoor and beach tournaments.
“It will bring hundreds of millions of dollars to the federation,” he said. “It would give us the opportunity to invest at all levels of football, in this pyramid, especially in the base, the masses.”
Cordeira is also in favor of discussing FIFA President Gianni Infantino’s proposal to increase the frequency of World Cups every two years.
“Especially in Latin America, Africa and Asia, they are desperate for growth,” Cardeiro said. “And it’s ultimately FIFA’s responsibility to help them grow and close the gap with the best.”
Cone is “concerned about the demands on players”, which increase the workload on men’s and women’s matches and harm the growth of US professional leagues, “especially on the women’s side of the game.”
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