Dhe debate about the future of women’s football in Germany, after an impressive European Championship with an audience rating of almost 18 million viewers at the final, is concentrating on two aspects: “Equal Pay” and “Equal Play”.
Chancellor Olaf Scholz has in the last week during his visit to the new campus of the German Football Association (DFB) once again placed gender-equal pay at the center of his considerations on strengthening women’s and girls’ football. When it comes to the question of how to get girls even more enthusiastic about football, “the bonuses at tournaments like this play a major role,” said the Chancellor. “My point of view is known: I think it’s something political – different from salary negotiations. That’s why it makes sense to discuss equal bonuses.”
Even during the group stage of the European Championship scholz under the hashtag #equalpay pushed this discussion forward with a tweet: “It’s 2022. Women and men should be paid equally. This also applies to sport, especially national teams. Spain is ahead of the curve there.”
The national coach of the German national team, Martina Voss-Tecklenburg, when it comes to the priority measures for the development of women’s and girls’ football, focuses on “equal play”, on better structural and infrastructural conditions. For the national coach, this includes basic salaries in the Bundesliga so that players do not have to work additionally to secure their livelihood.
According to a recently published scientific study by former international Lena Lotzen, the majority of players in the first and second Bundesliga work or study. The 200 CVs examined as part of their master’s thesis show that 67 percent of the players are studying or have completed a degree and around 25 percent are in training or have completed it. For Voss-Tecklenburg, another central point for a positive development of women’s football is “talent equity”, access for the top talent among girls to youth academies.
In addition to the Federal Chancellor and the national coach, the German fans are also taking a stand in the women’s football debate these days. A representative survey by the Nuremberg consulting and market research company SLC Management, which is available exclusively to the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, shows that the majority of German supporters want both positions to be implemented for the development of women’s football: more professional framework conditions for women and an “equal (re)” Bonus payment in the DFB national teams – i.e. “Equal Play” and “Equal Pay”.
Even if both aspects are capable of winning a majority among the fans, improving the framework conditions is of greater importance. What is striking in the study is that, with a total of 5284 respondents, there are no significant differences between male and female respondents on factual issues, but rather a strong agreement. The survey participants are fans, customers and those interested in the men’s Bundesliga.