FIFA President Gianni Infantino has announced that the prize money for the 2023 Women’s World Cup will increase by 300% to $150 million. This marks a significant step forward for the women’s game, although the prize money is still considerably lower than that of the men's game. In Qatar 2019, the total prize money awarded at the men’s World Cup was $440 million, and the cash to be split between teams is $60m at the women’s tournament.
Infantino’s announcement was made in his closing remarks at the 73rd FIFA Congress in Kigali, Rwanda, where he highlighted the historic journey for women’s football and for equality. He stated that “this will lead us to a path to equal pay.” He also announced a three-step plan to achieve this goal. Step one will be equal conditions and services for all men and women playing at a World Cup, including provisions such as accommodation and flights.
Infantino stated that “for the first time ever, I (plan to) dedicate a specific portion of this payment, which mainly has to go to football development, but a specific portion of that should go of course to the players.” Step three “will be the most complicated one” and “would include a dedicated marketing strategy for the women’s game.” Infantino is committed to achieving equality in payments for the 2026 men’s and 2027 women’s World Cups.
Despite the increase in prize money, the women’s game still receives significantly less funding than the men's game. Infantino criticized broadcasters and sponsors for not offering FIFA more deals for the tournament. He said some broadcasters offered 100 times less to cover the women’s competition despite viewing figures being “very similar, maybe 20% less.” Infantino called on broadcasters and sponsors to do more in this respect and to offer fairer deals to the women's game.
FIFPRO, soccer’s global players’ union, celebrated the progress made by FIFA in light of the prize money increase, which it said marks a step towards “greater equity and equality” in the industry.
The 2023 Women’s World Cup, which will take place in Australia and New Zealand from July 20 to August 20, will feature 32 teams for the first time, up from 24 teams in 2019.