Volkswagen “Disgusted” by US Soccer’s Treatment of Women’s Team

US Soccer sponsors, including Volkswagen, are showing their support for the national women’s soccer team after court filings revealed arguments made by US Soccer in its bid not to pay the men’s and the women’s teams equally.

“We at Volkswagen of America are disgusted by positions taken by US Soccer and they are simply unacceptable,” wrote VW in a statement yesterday. “We stand by the USWNT and the ideals they represent for the world. We demand that US Soccer ruse up to these values.”

Volkswagen was joined by other sponsors, including Coca-Cola and Visa in its condemnation of the arguments. US Soccer’s biggest sponsor, Nike, has remained notably silent, though.

The governing body is facing on-field protests from the women’s team after court filings showed that US Soccer argued that “indisputable science” showed that the World Cup-winning women’s national team were inferior to men. The body further argued that it requires more skill and responsibility to play for the men’s team, reports the New York Times.

The arguments were made in gender discrimination and equal pay lawsuits filed by the women’s team. There has long been a rift between the US women’s team, which is among the best on earth, and US Soccer, which has consistently insisted on paying its female athletes less than their male counterparts. To get a look into a part of the history of the trouble, we highly recommend 30 for 30’s episode on the 1999 team, “Back Pass.”

“To see that blatant misogyny and sexism as the argument used against us is really disappointing,” said midfielder Megan Rapinoe, adding that the arguments have caused “irreparable damage” to the relationship between US Soccer and the women’s team.