UPDATE: An official announcement of a new collective bargaining agreement is expected on Wednesday morning.
With the National Women’s Soccer League season now less than one month away, the United States women’s national team may have a new collective bargaining agreement with US Soccer by the end of the week, players’ association lawyer John Langel said.
Langel said that a new agreement could be finalized in the coming days. Preseason is already underway and several NWSL teams said they expect US national team players to begin training this week. But that requires a new deal, Langel said.
“That can’t happen unless we have an agreement,” the Philadelphia-based lawyer said. “All signs are that it will happen.”
US Soccer did not wish to comment on negotiations at this time.
The process to get a new CBA has been ongoing. It’s been a very different one from when the deals were negotiated in the WUSA and WPS eras, Langel said on March 1. Langel has represented the USWNSTPA since 1998.
Some US players have already arrived in their respective team markets.
Of the 23 players originally allocated, 15 are currently scheduled to begin the season with their respective NWSL teams at this time. Heather Mitts (Boston) retired and Amy Rodriguez (Seattle) is pregnant. Jill Loyden (Sky Blue FC), Hope Solo (Seattle), Amy LePeilbet (Chicago) and Carli Lloyd (Western New York) are all injured, while Megan Rapinoe (Seattle) and Tobin Heath (Portland) are currently playing in France with Lyon and PSG, respectively.
The Chicago Red Stars don’t expect Shannon Boxx to begin training until mid-April due to “personal reasons.” Boxx would start training with Chicago after the US players return from games in Germany (April 5) and the Netherlands (April 9). The NWSL season begins April 13, with Chicago hosting Seattle the next day.