Megan Rapinoe and Alex Morgan, two prominent American women’s athletes, loudly defended their Canadian rivals as they demonstrated against their own federation.
The national women’s soccer team of Canada declared on Saturday that they will go on strike to demand equal wages and more financing from the organization that governs the sport, Canada Soccer.
Following financial reductions, the players bemoaned an intolerable burden and demanded rapid change from those in positions of authority.
The male athletes from Canada expressed a similar viewpoint in their own statement, reiterating their “wholehearted support” for the women’s demonstrations.
Before the USA and Canada’s SheBelieves Cup match on Friday, Rapinoe criticized Canada Soccer’s stance while supporting the two-time Olympic winners’ predicament.
“We’re talking about the Olympic champions here,” Rapinoe said on Wednesday. “That was so well deserved and such a huge step forward for them.
“To have their federation meet them this way after winning a world championship is just f***ing wild to me. We’re with them all the time.”
Canada is considered to be a contender for this year’s Women’s World Cup. In Group B, they will play the hosts, Australia, the Republic of Ireland, and Nigeria.
After winning a six-year judicial battle last February to obtain the same financial conditions as the men, the women’s side in the USA is familiar with the fight for equal pay.
As she joined Rapinoe in supporting the Canada women’s team, Morgan, an international with 201 appearances and 120 goals, thought back on her nation’s own protests regarding equal pay.
“Canada is just getting started, and they know the long road ahead for them, because we just went through that,” Morgan added.
“I hope it’s a shorter road for them, and we’ll do anything possible to try and publicise what they’re fighting for, and why they should achieve that.”
Canada is likely to make a statement during the SheBelieves Cup match after already wearing their uniforms backwards to conceal the federation insignia during training this week.