Richard Nichols

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U.S. Soccer sues United States women’s national team over CBA

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It’s early days when it comes to the story, so we’ll get right to it: the United States Soccer Federation is suing its women’s national team.

The conflict stems from a collective bargaining agreement that the¬†Women’s National Team Players Association believes expired in 2012.

[ SPORTSWORLD: USWNT fighting battle for equal turf rights ]

USSF says it’s set to expire on Dec. 31, 2016.

From a U.S. Soccer press release:

Earlier today, U.S. Soccer reluctantly filed a lawsuit in federal court in Chicago to confirm the existence of the current collective bargaining agreement (CBA) that has been in place since 2013 and is set to expire on Dec. 31, 2016.

U.S. Soccer felt it necessary to take this course of action after Richard Nichols, the newly appointed Executive Director of the Women’s National Team Players Association, notified U.S. Soccer that he does not believe there to be a current CBA, a position which would allow the team to take labor actions on and after February 24 – a view inconsistent with the negotiating history and directly contrary to the position of the prior Executive Director who actually negotiated the current agreement.

This acrimony won’t look good on anyone.

Our friends at Equalizer Soccer report that the agreement was made in 2013, but never signed. The USSF clearly thinks it doesn’t need to be signed, while the WNTPA clearly knows the profile of the sport is higher and is hoping for a better payday and a faster road to better conditions (turf, etc.).