Finland and Everton goalkeeper Korpela reveals how government helped secure equal pay for women

Korpela says 'it meant so much' that male Finnish players were on their side (PA Images)
15:10pm, Tue 24 Sep 2019
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Everton goalkeeper Tinja-Riika Korpela has told how the Finnish government helped to secure equal pay for male and female footballers in her homeland.

When the Finnish FA confirmed the deal, they tweeted: "Same dreams, same goals, same game, same contract."

The women's national team had been petitioning for equality for years with their male counterparts supporting their cause.

But it was only when the Finnish government released a statement that the Finnish FA got their cheque books out.

The Justice Ministry said: "Equalizing national team compensation would be a clear statement from the football association that women's and men's football are equally valuable and important.”

Korpela said: “From then on negotiations went smoothly. Initially the football association said that there was no money.

“We learned that no one will offer anything for free. You have to stick by what you want and not give up.

"We didn’t want to act difficult because the football association had arranged a lot for us. But sometimes you need to be hard to get what you deserve.

 "We did this for the future players as well, not only for the current team.”

The male support also meant a lot to not only Korpela but the entire national women's team.

"It means so much to us that they are on our side," Korpela added.

"We also tried to convince the football association that equal treatment would mean positive publicity for them.”

Korpela will be back in action this weekend as Everton host Manchester City in the Women's Super League at 12.30pm