The Socceroos and Matildas are set to see their World Cup prize money split down the middle in a massive move that will shift the landscape of football in Australia. The 50-50 split for four years is set to be announced this week after the previous collective bargaining agreement expired in October.
The prize money for the Socceroos reaching the round of 16 at the men's World Cup in Qatar last year was $US13 million ($A20 million). If they were to reach the same stage at the next World Cup, the proposed new deal would mean players would net half of that, guaranteeing each player in the 26-man squad $385,000.
'IN TEARS': Sam Kerr and teammates rocked by shock news
The earnings, however, are expected to be even greater as FIFA has flagged that prize money will increase for the next men's and women's World Cup in 2026 and 2027 respectively. Australian players are also set to enjoy an increase in Football Australia's (FA) commercial revenue share.
As well as an increase in prize money, the Matildas players will soon benefit from a contractual change with FA. The proposal is that female players will be given standard call-up and match fees - equal to those earned by the Socceroos - rather than receiving payment via the three-tiered central contract system that is currently in place.
Under the previous agreement, tier-one contracted Matildas earned $83,000 per year with that figure rising to $110,000 at the end of the previous agreement. Those players received that money guaranteed regardless of whether or not they played.
Australian football to soon have a second tier
A second tier of football in Australia will be introduced in early 2025, with clubs informed of the approval for the newly-created division on Monday. FA bosses are expected to unveil the final format and participating teams on November 20, in a move that will revolutionise Australian football.
Originally slated to begin at the start of next year, the new league - which will sit below the A-League Men and above the National Premier Leagues (NPL) - will start in March or April 2025. "This additional time allows us to give the clubs an extra amount of time to get ready to play," FA chief executive James Johnson said.
It is currently unknown how clubs will be able to win promotion to the A-League and how any relegation from the premier Australia competition would work. A total of 32 clubs expressed interest in the new competition in March but that number has since decreased as FA moved towards finalising its new league.
FA is currently in the process of negotiating new TV rights deals for the Socceroos and Matildas and the governing body is confident the second tier will garner interest as well.
- with AAP
Sign up to our newsletter and score the biggest sport stories of the week.