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World Cup Prize Money

For the first time, FIFA will pay out prize money at the Women's World Cup. Now isn't that nice of Sepp?

The champion receives $1 million.
The runner-up gets $800,000.
Third place: $650,000.
Fourth place: $550,000.
4 quarterfinal losers: $350,000 each.
4 first-round losers: $250,000 each.

Not exactly on par with the men's World Cup, but it's a start. Last summer, Italy took home $21.5 million while a team that did not make it out of the first round (um, USA) received $5.9 million.

Bottom line: The men's World Cup is a massive international money-maker for FIFA, the women's tournament is not.

Where do the women's winnings go? Every team has its own policies, but for the U.S. squad, through a collective bargaining agreement between the players' union and the U.S. Soccer Federation, it has already been decided. For winning the championship, each of the 21 players will receive $50,000 (which adds up to more than $1 million the USSF would receive from FIFA). They'll get $20,000 apiece for second place and $10,000 for third. The players are also guaranteed additional bonuses for participating in a Victory Tour this fall. There will be 10 games and $1.2 million to divide if they win the World Cup, three games and $3,600 per player for second place and three games and $3,333 for third. (Three matches against Mexico in October have already been announced: in St. Louis, Portland, Ore., and Albuquerque.)

Of note: Defender Stephanie Lopez has retained amateur eligibility in order to play again for the University of Portland this fall and is not permitted to accept any money from the USSF.

Unclear what the North Koreans are doing with their $350,000. Probably going into this guy's pockets.

That's it for now. The U.S. team boarded a bus this afternoon for the 3-hour drive south to Hangzhou, site of Thursday's semifinal against Brazil. I hope you find this story about the increasing physical nature of women's soccer interesting.

By Steve Goff  |  September 25, 2007; 4:34 AM ET
Categories:  Women  
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