The report of the commission of inquiry reveals the enormous scope of the scandal. Clubs, those responsible for the league and the association are now required to react.
The abuse scandal in US women’s soccer is expanding, the commission of inquiry led by former prosecutor Sally Yates presented shocking results on Monday. The 172-page report deals with “verbal and emotional violence, sexist language, unwanted sexual advances, touching and forced sexual intercourse”. Yates and her commission spoke to more than 200 players from the professional league NWSL, including some national players. Abuse in the NWSL is ingrained and of enormous scope, Yates said. Her commission found a league in which “systematic abuse and sexual misconduct” were the order of the day. “The players who have shared their stories have shown great courage,” Yates said. “Now is the time for the institutions that have failed them so far to listen and reform to protect them .” According to Yates, this includes the clubs, those responsible for the league and the US Soccer Association.
“The findings of the investigation are extremely disturbing,” said Cindy Parlow Cone, president of US Soccer and a two-time Olympic and one-time world champion as a player with the national team. The abuse described in the report is inexcusable and should not have a place in any area of life. “US Soccer will do everything in its power to ensure that players of all skill levels have a safe place to learn, grow and enjoy their sport with peace of mind.”
After the massive allegations of sexual assault in the NWSL, US Soccer commissioned Yates to investigate the cases. She has “extensive experience conducting complex and highly sensitive investigations” and will be given “full autonomy, access and the resources necessary to pursue the facts and evidence wherever they may lead,” US Soccer said at the time. The players Sinead Farrelly and Meleana Shim had described the alleged sexual assault of their ex-coach Paul Riley in an article on the Internet portal The Athletic. The NWSL club North Carolina Courage then released the Englishman, the US association revoked his license. Riley denies the allegations, which sparked a violent reaction in the land of the world champions.