Germany goalkeeper Almuth Schult has spoken at length about her involvement with NWSL club Angel City FC. The 31-year-old, who is working as a TV expert for ARD during the tournament, also commented on the men's World Cup in Qatar.
In an interview with Bild and Sport Bild, Schult described her time in the USA as "very interesting" and emphasized the differences to the customs in Germany. In the NWSL (National Women's Soccer League), for example, it goes without saying that the players' children "are part of the group and even take the team bus to the stadium." The strict separation between private and professional life as in Germany does not exist in this form in the USA.
The goalkeeper described her own club Angel City FC, which was founded by many prominent women from the show and sports industries such as Natalie Portman and Serena Williams, as "something special". The club from Los Angeles has given itself a social mission and invests ten percent of all sponsorship income in charitable projects. The players would also take an active part in the projects, provide support with food distribution for the homeless or take the time to visit children's hospitals.
With a view to the women's Bundesliga, Schult would like to see more professional structures in the near future. A minimum salary plays a decisive role in this. In addition, every player must have "a first-class training ground, always access to a reasonable weight room and professional medical care." Across the board, Germany is still a long way from that.
The former Wolfsburg resident considers the new TV contract, which guarantees the women's Bundesliga five million euros per season, to be a "step forward". But there is still room for improvement. In the English WSL, for example, twelve million euros are paid per year. Schult also criticized the fragmentation of the game day with schedules from Friday to Monday. The Monday games in particular are problematic for players who still have to work alongside football.
Schult was disappointed that there was a general lack of capacity for young girls who are football fans. After the European Championships in July, DFB President Bernd Neuendorf admitted that the clubs are currently unable to cope with the large number of girls who want to play football.
The six-time German champion has a clear opinion on human rights violations in the World Cup host country Qatar. A World Cup ambassador from the emirate recently spoke of the fact that homosexuality is mental damage. "I was stunned," Schult commented on this statement. "Some things are incomprehensible. These views are simply wrong."
She would like Fifa to take a clear position: "I'm also surprised that the Fifa President says it should only be about football. The opposite is true: it's important that the discussion about human rights stays alive and is conducted ."
Nevertheless, she can understand it when the national players refrain from making political statements. With a view to the hostilities that Joshua Kimmich's family was exposed to in the context of the corona vaccination debate, everyone has to weigh up the consequences for him and his environment. "I only find socio-political statements meaningful if you personally feel they are right," says Schult. Wearing the rainbow captain's armband, for example, the goalkeeper considers a "clear sign that you should give if you're convinced of it."
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This article was originally published on 90min.de as Almuth Schult talks about her time in the NWSL and the World Cup in Qatar.