The U.S. women's national soccer team is getting the red carpet treatment this week, following its thrilling 5-to-2 victory over Japan in the World Cup Final. After several rallies and other celebrations, the crowning event is the team getting a rare ticker-tape parade in New York City. Typically a parade of this kind is reserved for New York based sports teams. But perhaps even more significantly, they will be the first women's sport team given the "Canyon of Heroes" honor. But will this translate into more money for women's sports?
"The team really defied expectations and this will undoubtedly have a huge impact on women's sports going forward. It is great to see such buzz for a team that wasn't really on the national radar screen," Moira Forbes, President of ForbesWoman and Executive Vice President of Forbes Media told CNBC.
Despite winning a record three World Cups, the most by any country, there remains quite a pay disparity between women and men soccer players. The ladies from the U.S. will take home $2 million from FIFA for winning the World Cup. But to put that in perspective, last year the German men's team collected $35 million after winning the 2014 World Cup.
"It is a meaningful difference in pay but it shows that women's soccer still has a long way to go in terms of generating the type of audience and sponsorships to close that pay gap in the coming years," Forbes said.
The women's World Cup final was the most-watched soccer game in U.S. history with a total audience of 20.3 million viewers, which is up dramatically from 2011.
The big question that remains to be seen is whether this championship win has the potential to be a game changer for women in sports.