Locals support team USA in FIFA Women's World Cup Finals

The U.S. Women's National Soccer Team will face off in the FIFA World Cup finals in France on Sunday, but they have had to face obstacles on and off the field.

Posted: Jul 6, 2019 11:46 PM
Updated: Jul 6, 2019 11:57 PM

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) - The U.S. Women's National Soccer Team will face off in the FIFA World Cup finals in France on Sunday, but they have had to face obstacles on and off the field. All 28 players are suing their employer, U.S. Soccer, for gender discrimination. Purdue Professor Cheryl Cooky is an expert on gender inequality in sports.

"The women are set to earn a maximum of $90,000 this tournament, whereas the men had the potential to earn over a half a million dollars," she said. 

The U.S. Men's National Soccer Team didn't even qualify for the 2018 FIFA tournament. Cooky said when it comes the world cup, it's all about the three R's.

"That's ratings, revenue, and retail," she said.

U.S. Soccer is claiming they don't have to pay the women's team as much money because they don't bring in as many ratings or as much revenue. That wasn't the case in this year's tournament.

"FIFA has estimated a number close to 1 billion viewers across all of it's platforms for this women's world cup tournament," she said.

Cooky said U.S. Soccer data shows the women's team is bringing in 2 million more dollars than the men's team.

"This team is bringing such a high quality of the sport into our living rooms, into our sports bars and our communities," she said.

"This team has captured (the locals) heart," said owner of Nine Irish Brothers, Jerry O'Bryan. "They take a beating and keep on ticking, they're really good."

His West Lafayette location was packed for the semi-final game against England.

"We had a nice crowd in here with the U-S-A chant," he said. "When they finally won that thing, it was euphoric."

O'Bryan said he has a passion of women's sports. He was a fast-pitch coach for Purdue's softball team in the 1970's. He said he's also had the pleasure of seeing his daughters grow up and participate in various sports. He thinks this women's team is inspiring the next generation of athletes.

"My granddaughter is 14 and she comes in and she just loves it and she thinks wow, maybe I can do that someday," he said. "You didn't always have that in women's sports."

"The women's team is out performing the men here in the U.S.," said Cooky. "These kinds of ideas that women's sport isn't as exciting as men's sport or people aren't as interested, no one's going to tune in to watch. All of those conventional understandings are being directly challenged."

Cooky said equality is a win for both genders. She has been studying this issue for more than 20 years. She said it's easier for universities to treat their teams more equally because of things like Title IX. She thinks Purdue does a good job of keeping its teams on a level playing field, but said there is still room for improvement.

"For every dollar that gets invested in women's soccer at the collegiate level, two and a half dollars goes to the men's side," she said. 

O'Bryan said this team is showing the world what they are made of.

"The American men are tough, but the women win titles," he said with a laugh.

"I love these international competitions because they bring people from all over the world together over this common love of sport, this common language," said Cooky. "We have such a dominant, athletic and competitive team."

Nine Irish Brothers is opening its doors early on Sunday at 10:30 a.m. for a watch party. Kick off between the U.S. and the Netherlands in the final game is at 11 a.m. Cooky said she ordered a Megan Rapinoe jersey that she hopes gets to her door in time for the game.

West Lafayette
Few Clouds
91° wxIcon
Hi: 92° Lo: 72°
Feels Like: 95°
Kokomo
Clear
89° wxIcon
Hi: 92° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 91°
Rensselaer
Clear
86° wxIcon
Hi: 88° Lo: 66°
Feels Like: 90°
Fowler
Clear
86° wxIcon
Hi: 89° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 90°
Williamsport
Clear
90° wxIcon
Hi: 91° Lo: 71°
Feels Like: 94°
Crawfordsville
Broken Clouds
88° wxIcon
Hi: 90° Lo: 71°
Feels Like: 93°
Frankfort
Scattered Clouds
91° wxIcon
Hi: 90° Lo: 71°
Feels Like: 97°
Delphi
Clear
90° wxIcon
Hi: 91° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 91°
Monticello
Clear
90° wxIcon
Hi: 95° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 91°
Logansport
Clear
90° wxIcon
Hi: 90° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 92°
WLFI Radar
WLFI Temps
WLFI Planner

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 47432

Reported Deaths: 2687
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion11546683
Lake5104242
Elkhart321144
Allen2737129
St. Joseph190866
Cass16389
Hamilton1538100
Hendricks1390100
Johnson1256118
Porter72037
Tippecanoe6948
Madison65564
Clark64044
Bartholomew58244
Howard56557
LaPorte56326
Kosciusko5354
Vanderburgh5026
Marshall4823
Jackson4693
Noble46928
LaGrange4677
Hancock44035
Boone43743
Delaware43150
Shelby42325
Floyd37144
Morgan32731
Montgomery29320
Grant29126
Clinton2882
Monroe27628
Dubois2666
White26010
Henry25815
Decatur24932
Lawrence24225
Vigo2318
Dearborn22823
Harrison21222
Warrick21229
Greene18532
Miami1822
Jennings17411
Putnam1688
DeKalb1604
Scott1607
Daviess14216
Orange13623
Wayne1366
Steuben1282
Perry1279
Franklin1248
Ripley1157
Jasper1142
Wabash1122
Carroll1102
Fayette987
Newton9810
Starke923
Whitley905
Randolph784
Huntington742
Jefferson722
Wells711
Fulton691
Jay680
Washington681
Gibson672
Knox640
Pulaski641
Clay604
Rush563
Adams501
Benton480
Owen471
Sullivan441
Brown381
Posey380
Blackford372
Spencer371
Crawford300
Fountain302
Tipton301
Switzerland260
Martin220
Parke220
Ohio140
Vermillion140
Warren141
Union130
Pike100
Unassigned0193

COVID-19 Important links and resources

As the spread of COVID-19, or as it's more commonly known as the coronavirus continues, this page will serve as your one-stop for the resources you need to stay informed and to keep you and your family safe. CLICK HERE

Closings related to the prevention of the COVID-19 can be found on our Closings page.

Community Events