A federal judge on Friday ruled that members of the United States national team are bound by terms of the most recent collective bargaining agreement through the end of 2016. The most recent agreement expired at the end of 2012 but had been extended by a memorandum of understanding while the sides work to negotiate a new agreement. U.S. Soccer filed suit against the national team players in February seeking to block their ability to go on strike. Friday’s ruling means the players cannot strike because they are bound by the agreement through the end of 2016.
Judge Sharon Johnson Coleman from Chicago made the ruling.
“We are pleased with the court’s decision and remain committed to negotiating a new CBA to take effect at the beginning of next year,” U.S. Soccer said in a statement.
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Richard Nichols, the executive director of the players union, appeared as if he was already shifting his focus toward the other legal battle with the federation–the complaint filed by the players with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission claiming the women’s team is compensated unfairly as compared to the men’s side.
“To be clear, the court’s ruling today does not negate the fact that U.S. Soccer does not fairly compensate the women’s national team, or in any way impact the players’ demands for equal pay for equal work,” Nichols told The Associated Press.
Friday’s ruling had no bearing on the EEOC complaint.
Players’ social media accounts were quiet on the matter.
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