The past three Socceroos coaches have been paid about $1 million per annum, while only a fraction of that amount is offered to the head coach of the Matildas.
Sources close to the FFA suggest there is also a significant pay gap between assistant coaches, physiotherapists, team managers, analysts and fitness coaches of the Socceroos and Matildas.
In some ways, it’s understandable given the popularity and historic revenue differences between men’s and women’s sport and the different markets the two teams operate in.
However, the counter argument is that those in women’s football perhaps have to work harder.
The Matildas played 11 games this year, one more than the Socceroos, while both teams have featured in major international tournaments. There is often more preparation work required of backroom staff due to the nature of women’s club football: less data, less available video and players whose wellbeing is managed haphazardly across two different clubs in different continents.
Bridging the gap
There was no shortage of big names in attendance at the FIFPro conference in Sydney last week but former Italian international Damiano Tommasi wasn’t pestering organises to meet the likes of Geremi Njitap or Simon Colosimo. Instead, the Serie A winner pestered his Australian counterparts to put him in touch with former Western Sydney Wanderers striker Mark Bridge.
Former Serie A winner Tommasi struck-up a close friendship with Bridge while playing for Tianjin Teda in China during the twilight of his career but lost contact with the Australian shortly after returning to Italy. During a break in last week’s conference, Tommasi skipped the meet-and-greet coffee break with other union types to catch up with his old friend.
Free entry for firies
The A-League has shown plenty of gratitude towards the NSW Rural Fire Service in the past week for their heroics battling blazes across the eastern seaboard, and Western Sydney Wanderers will follow that example by throwing open the gates for all firefighters on Friday night.
Fire brigade members will gain free entry for the match against Melbourne City at Bankwest Stadium. Let’s hope they’re not too busy at work to miss the game.
Football for a good cause
Sticking with the charity theme, and the third “90 Minutes for Cancer” match will be held on Sunday at Club Marconi.
The first two years of the event have raised more than $55,000, and this year all money raised prior to and on the day will go to the Children’s Medical Research Institute to support cancer research on behalf of the Judith Hyam Memorial Trust Fund.
The day involves local teams from various age groups participating in a friendly competition, with food, family entertainment, jumping castles and face painting available for kids. All are welcome. For more information or to make a donation, check out their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/90minutesforcancer/
Putting spare gear to good use
Former Brisbane Strikers midfielder Nick Meredith may have disappeared from the Fox Sports A-League coverage but he is keeping busy, having started up his own charity campaign.
Meredith has launched Footballs For Africa, an initiative designed to bring second-hand balls and equipment to those in need in Namibia.
Meredith has put the call out to clubs in the Sydney area to round up any old footballs, portable goals, playing kits, or literally anything else lying around that might still be of use. He’s planning on a trip early in the New Year to round up as much as he can get his hands on to help fill a shipping container that will be sent over to Africa.
If you can help, contact him at email@example.com.
Dominic Bossi is a football reporter with The Sydney Morning Herald.
Vince is a sports reporter for The Sydney Morning Herald.