The United States women’s soccer team and winner of the 2015 Women’s World Cup are paid pretty poorly. While professional male soccer players in the US receive a minimum salary of $60,000 per year, players in the National Women’s Soccer League can receive as little as $6,842.
The world-beating female team will also be rewarded for their win with a much lower cash prize than their male counterparts: $2 million compared to the $35 million that Germany’s winning male soccer team took home last year, a discrepancy that has put the game under scrutiny before.
The pay gap means the men’s team is guaranteed a salary that, while unglamorous compared with their European counterparts, at least beats working for minimum wage. Should the women’s team want to live on their minimum income from soccer alone, they would find themselves well below the US poverty threshold. (Instead, professional female footballers depend on sponsorships or second jobs to supplement their annual wages, which are capped at a maximum of $37,800.)
Here’s how those salaries stack up against athletes for other American sports which, while popular at home, don’t get to export the US’s glory via such tournaments as the World Cup: