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Soccer-Canada women's team reach interim agreement over funding

By Amy Tennery

(Reuters) -Canada Soccer and its women's national team players have reached an interim funding agreement for 2022, the sport's governing body said on Thursday.

The terms of the deal reflect that of the men's national team, Canada Soccer said, with per-game incentives and results-based compensation. A final collective bargaining agreement is still under negotiation.

The women's national team's last agreement with Canada Soccer expired in 2021.

"This is about respect, this is about dignity, and this is about equalising the competitive environment in a world that is fundamentally unequal," Canada Soccer's General Secretary Earl Cochrane said in a statement.

"We have been consistent and public about the need to have fairness and equal pay be pillars of any new agreements with our players, and we are delivering on that today."

A labour dispute between the governing body and its women's team had plunged the run-up to the Women's World Cup into turmoil less than 150 days before the quadrennial tournament kicked off.

The Olympic champions played last month's SheBelieves Cup under protest after facing the threat of legal action because of their plans to strike over pay equity concerns and budget.

They took the field wearing purple shirts that read "enough is enough" ahead of their opening match at the annual round-robin tournament, and earlier this week Canada Soccer President Nick Bontis announced his resignation.

(Reporting by Amy Tennery in New York, editing by Ed Osmond & Shri Navaratnam)