USSF Changes Legal Team Prior To Trial
March 13, 2020 by Phoebe Coddington
Surprise Switch in Legal Team for USSF Due to Public Outcry
In a surprise move, the United States Soccer Federation (“USSF”) has switched its legal team a little over a month before trial in their Equal Pay lawsuit. The ball pass is due to the resounding outcry from the public and USSF’s biggest sponsors related to USSF’s legal arguments that women players are not as skilled as the men players.
USSF President Carlos Cordeiro released a statement apologizing for the legal position the USSF took in their summary judgment filings:
“On behalf of U.S. Soccer, I sincerely apologize for the offense and pain caused by language in this week’s court filing, which did not reflect the values of our federation or our tremendous admiration of our women’s national team,” the statement said. “Our WNT players are incredibly talented and work tirelessly, as they have demonstrated time and again from their Olympic gold medals to their World Cup titles.”
USSF has retained Latham & Watkins to “join and guide our legal strategy going forward.” It is unclear what capacity Seyfarth Shaw, who was responsible for USSF’s summary judgment filings, will have going forward.
Cordeiro said about adding to the legal team, “I have made it clear to our legal team that even as we debate facts and figures in the course of this case, we must do so with the utmost respect not only for our Women’s National Team players but for all female athletes around the world. As we do, we will continue to work to resolve this suit in the best interest of everyone involved.”
Before Cordiero made his statement, the USWNT players wore their warm-up shirts inside out, hiding the USSF crest, in protest before Wednesday’s finale in the SheBelieves Cup. In the end, the USWNT, in keeping with their incredible skill and dominance on the soccer field, took the cup with their final 3-1 win against Japan in the SheBelieves Cup.