Ronda Rousey has given her thoughts on the “equal pay” for women question in the past.
WWE superstar Ronda Rousey, a former UFC fighter and UFC hall of famer, has spoken in the past about the unequal pay between men and women in pro sports.
A recently resurfaced video from 2015 shows Rousey being asked about pay equality between the men’s and women’s Australian soccer teams. Rousey responded to a question from an Australian reporter by saying, “I think that how much you get paid should have something to do with how much money you bring in. I’m the highest paid fighter not because Dana and Lorenzo [Fertitta] wanted to do something nice to the ladies. They do it because I bring in the highest numbers. They do it because I make them the most money and I think that the money that they make should be proportionate to the money that they bring in.”
Rousey’s comments have resurfaced as the U.S. women’s national soccer team has used its platform as 2019 World Cup champions to bring a conversation about equal pay for female professional athletes to the mainstream.
In March 2019, every player on the U.S. Women’s national soccer team filed a gender discrimination lawsuit against the United States Soccer Federation. In the lawsuit, the women argue that even though they play more games than the men’s team, they still don’t make as much money as the men do. The women also argue that they win far more than the men, so they should be paid more.
One major reason for the difference in pay between the U.S. men’s and women’s teams is that the men’s World Cup generates so much more money than the women’s that it’s insane. The 2018 men’s World Cup earned upwards of $6 billion for FIFA, whereas the 2019 women’s World Cup only generated an estimated $131 million.
FIFA paid a total of $30 million in prize money for the 2019 women’s World Cup. This means that women’s teams were paid 22% of the money generated by the 2019 women’s World Cup.
However, total prize money for the 2018 men’s World Cup was $400 million, just 6% of revenue. Therefore, female players in the world cup actually earned a much higher.