KSÍ, the Football Association of Iceland, has decided that the women's national team in football will receive the same bonuses as the men's team, fótbolti.net reports. The board of KSÍ made the decision in order to further equality within the sport. The women's team will now receive the same performance bonuses, which will depend upon success on the pitch, as the men's team.
The daily bonuses for both genders, which are payed for the duration that a player stays with the national team, had been equal for some time. This action by KSÍ means that the women's team receives a hefty pay rise, in terms of their performance bonuses. "It is a step which all of the board agreed upon. We believe it is a progressive move. We aim to be progressive and decided to take this action", Guðni Bergsson, president of KSÍ, commented.
"It has been in the discussion in the Nordic countries, and elsewhere, and Norway has already taken the step. We thought that it was time for this move as well as encouraging for Icelandic football," he commented further. The bonuses are paid on a point-by-point basis, for the performance of the team in the qualifying phases for major tournaments.
The national women's team has qualified for the last three European Championships, in 2009, 2013, and 2017. The team was the first national football side to reach a major tournament when it qualified for the European Championship in 2009. Their male counterparts achieved the same feat in 2016, but have thus far only qualified for one European Championship compared to the three tournaments the women have participated in.
The women's team is currently ranked 19th best side in the world, according to the FIFA national team rankings. They recently achieved a heroic 2-3 victory away to Germany, which was Germany's first loss on home turf in 19 years. Iceland is currently in 2nd place in their World Cup qualifying group, as they look to emulate the success of the men's side by qualifying for the 2019 World Cup in France.
KSÍ commented in an official statement that the association hoped that this action would lead to other associations to follow suit, and that further strides for equality in the sport may be made in the coming years.