The players of the Canada women’s national team have had enough with Canada Soccer.
The players say that they’ve been informed that the federation, in a World Cup year, will slash their budget and schedule no home friendlies. As a collective, they posted a lengthy statement decrying the situation on social media Friday, before announcing on TSN that they were on strike.
“The Canadian women’s national soccer team is both outraged and deeply concerned with the news of significant cuts to the national team programs for 2023,” began the players’ statement.
The women’s national team statement says that Canada Soccer has told them that there are cuts to training camp days, “full camp windows,” the number of players and staff that can be involved, and that the federation will repeat a long-standing and widely criticized habit of not scheduling any home friendlies.
“Our preparation for the World Cup and the future success of the women’s national team program are being compromised by Canada Soccer’s continued inability to support its national teams,” continued the statement. “Despite our strong track record of success and history-making achievements for more than a decade, we continue to be told there is not enough money to adequately fund our program and our youth teams.”
Speaking on TSN shortly after their statement, veteran players Christine Sinclair and Janine Beckie confirmed that the players are striking after hearing nothing from Canada after submitting demands on Thursday.
“We will not be taking part in any activities going forward,” said Beckie, with the players confirming that this includes training. Canada is just six days away from a scheduled SheBelieves Cup match against the U.S. women’s national team in Orlando.
“We have been patiently negotiating with Canada Soccer for more than a year. Now that our World Cup is approaching, the women’s national team players are being told to prepare to perform at a world-class level without the same level of support that was received by the men’s national team in 2022, and with significant cuts to our program — to simply make do with less.”