Norway's male and female football players will receive the same amount of pay for representing their country.
In what is believed to be the first deal of its kind in world football, the Norwegian football association has announced that the amount of money paid to the women's national team will equal that of the men's. The amount will almost double from 3.1 million to 6 million Norwegian krone, and includes more than half a million kroner paid by the male Norwegian players, from money they receive for commercial activities.
Caroline Graham Hansen, a winger for the national team, took to Instagram to share her delight at the announcement: “This was maybe a small thing for you to do for us, this will maybe not show in your monthly wages, this was maybe an obvious move for you to do.”
She continued: “But this means everything for us, for our team, our sport, and for all the female athletes out there, who do the same work, the same sport as men do, but get paid less. For you to say that equal pay is how it should be, makes me want to cry. It makes me want to hug you all. Thank you for making this step for female athletes. For showing equality and for helping us all, making it a bit easier, to chase our dreams. To make them come true!”
Norway has a strong tradition of equality especially when it comes to gender in the workplace, although pay gaps between men and women are still an issue in many industries. Players' union boss Joachim Walltin believes this is the first deal of its kind in world football.
Read more about football in Norway.
Some will argue that pay equality is the absolute minimum the women's team should expect given their performance on the pitch. Norway have won the Women's World Cup once and the Women's European Championship twice, and are widely regarded as one of the best teams in the world.
In 1995, the team won every match to lift the World Cup in Sweden. Goals from Hege Riise and Marianne Pettersen within five first-half minutes were enough to see off Germany in the final.