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Lingering questions from the NWSL’s cash injection: What about USWNT players?

Photo Copyright Lewis Gettier for The Equalizer

The National Women’s Soccer League on Friday announced a slew of new rules which will mostly allow it to compete financially on the global market while maintaining slow(-ish) growth as a single-entity league.

Owners and players are overwhelmingly thrilled with the changes — as much for the direction they represent as anything else.

“This is opening the door,” NWSL Players Association executive director Yael Averbuch told The Equalizer. “It’s representing a directional movement of the league. That’s why players are so excited about it.”

There are, however, some interesting subplots to watch. The biggest point of interest? How do U.S. women’ national team players feel? And what will that mean when their collective bargaining agreement ends in 2021?

The NWSL’s new rules mean an international player can earn significantly more money than a U.S. international for her work in the NWSL. The latest CBA removed an old stipulation that U.S. players had to be the highest-paid in the NWSL, and there’s no doubt that U.S. players will be happy to see the league moving forward. A better league for everyone is also a better league for them.

But there could also be an interesting precedent being set for the not-too-distant future. I asked NWSL president Amanda Duffy and U.S. Women’s National Team Players Association Becca Roux, among others, about that.

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