Denmark's football association has reached an agreement that will allow the country's women's team to play a World Cup qualifying match next week. This came after a match had been canceled due to a dispute over pay.
The Danish football association (DBU) announced on Friday that it had reached what it described as a "partial agreement," that will allow the 2019 Women's World Cup qualifier in Croatia on Tuesday to go ahead as scheduled.
The joint statement issued by the DBU and the women's national team didn't reveal any details of the deal, but it did said that the players union FIFPro and UEFA would join negotiations towards a more permanent agreement, which are to continue following Tuesday's qualifier.
"It is important that we now have a partial deal in place so it is possible to play the World Cup qualifiers," team captain Pernille Harder said, adding that the players were hoping to reach a collective bargaining agreement with the DBU.
Earlier this week, the DBU announced that it had canceled this Friday's scheduled match against Sweden in Gotheborg, saying not of its players were available due to an ongoing dispute over pay and conditions. The players are demanding equal pay and conditions as their male counterparts, and weren't satisfied by the DBU's offer to significantly increase its spending on the women's team.
In September, the DBU cancelled a friendly rematch of the Women's European Championship final between Denmark and the Netherlands after wage talks broke down. The DBU and the women then reached a partial agreement to allow Denmark's first Women's World Cup qualifier, a 6-1 win over Hungary in Budapest on September 19.
Meanwhile, there is still no word on what FIFA or UEFA sanctions the DBU could face over the cancelation of this Friday's match. Possible sanctions range from disqualification, to withholding TV revenue payments, to forcing it to pay compensations to opponents for lost revenue.
UEFA said any disciplinary case could only be opened only after Friday's match fails to go ahead. The Swedish FA has said it is considering seeking compensation, but that no decision had been taken as yet.
Norway lead the way
The Danish women are just the latest in a series of teams to demand equal treatment. Earlier this month, the Norwegian football association became the world's first to offer its women players equal compensation to that of its men.
Meanwhile, back in April, the US women's team struck a new collective-bargaining agreement with US Soccer, ending more than a year of at times contentious negotiations. The specific terms of the agreement, which runs through 2021 were not released, but it is reported to include a significant increase in compensation.
pfd/mds (AP, Reuters)