NY showers confetti, love on US women's soccer team

Megan Rapinoe lifts up a trophy after winning the Women's World Cup final

The team stormed to their fourth World Cup triumph with a 2-0 victory against the Netherlands last weekend and they have returned home to a heroine's welcome in the Big Apple, where city officials have arranged the parade for fans of the team to pay tribute to Megan Rapinoe and co. The U.S. women's team was regarded as the heavy favorite to win the title this year, and anything less than a championship would be considered a failure.

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio joined the US World Cup stars on Rapinoe's float and later hosted the US team in a ceremony at City Hall to present them with the "Keys to the City". "Straight girls and gay girls", she said. Yet as Team USA itself and many others have pointed out, the world's best female soccer players are not paid almost as much as their male equivalents in soccer or any other major sport.

Today, female soccer players get paid, but not enough, according to a lawsuit the U.S. women's national soccer team (USWNT) filed against U.S. Soccer, their employer, alleging, "institutionalized gender discrimination". "I don't think anyone on the team has any interest in lending the platform that we've worked so hard to build and the things that we fight for and the way that we live our life".

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Fifteen-year-old Lily Buccholz, of Sumner, Iowa, stood by the parade route Wednesday with her family while dressed in red, white and blue. Nike says the USA women's soccer jersey is the top-selling soccer jersey, men's or women's, ever to be sold on Nike.com in one season.

Once the team's celebrations, which began with a New York City ticker-tape parade attended by thousands of adoring fans on July 10, 2019, are complete, the players will focus on a more serious matter - pay equality.

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Aly Hoover, 12, of Glen Ridge, New Jersey, stood at the sidelines with a poster of the face of Alex Morgan, one of the team's stars. Team USA was celebrating its second consecutive World Cup victory - and its triumphant performance has called fresh attention to the demand for equal pay.

She says that if she sees Morgan in the parade she's going to "scream my head off and try to get a hug".

Despite the name, recent "ticker-tape" parades have been missing the ticker tape - the ubiquitous strips of paper that ran through stock tickers that once provided price quotes for Wall Street traders. Female players, though, appeared to need to "turn in consistently outstanding performances on the world stage" to keep up in pay with their male counterparts, and there was "still a massive gap between men's and women's World Cup bonuses", The Post wrote.

"We are very happy to accept your invitation to come", Rapinoe said after the New York Senator extended the invitation.

The events are named for the long strands of ticker tape that used to be showered down from nearby office buildings.

"This group is so resilient, is so tough, has such a sense of humour, is just so badass", Rapinoe told the crowd at City Hall.

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