England forward Beth Mead said she was “sickened” by the results of the report which found systematic abuse in the National Women’s Soccer League and said that England players are in contact with United States players to find a way to show support in their friendly on Friday.
The investigation into player abuse found a long list of failures by NWSL coaches and executives, as well as the United States Soccer Federation itself. The report cited systematic “verbal and emotional abuse and sexual misconduct … spanning multiple teams, coaches, and victims.”
“I was quite sickened when I found out,” Mead said. “It’s a worldwide problem. Women need to be taken seriously a lot more. [I am] proud of the victims that stood up. People need to start doing better.”
Mead, who won England’s Player of the Year award, added that nothing has been decided regarding how they can pay respect to the victims of abuse, but said “we are working on something to show our support for them.”
England boss Sarina Wiegman echoed Mead’s displeasure with the report findings and said it is time to “step up” to stop abuse from happening.
“My first reaction is that’s horrible, unacceptable,” Wiegman said. “I feel very sorry for all the victims and it should stop immediately, of course. I think it’s a worldwide problem still. I think it’s time we will step up and stop these things.”