Toni Duggan: Central contracts would benefit Wales stars

By Gareth Rhys OwenBBC Wales Sport
She may have been a World Cup star, but does Duggan know her 'diolch' from her 'cwtches'?

England forward Toni Duggan says her Welsh counterparts would benefit from the introduction of central contracts.

England players have been awarded central contracts since 2009, with 27 on yearly deals worth about £26,000.

There is no such system in Wales, where most players need to work to supplement their income from football.

"As soon as central contracts came in, it meant that girls could give up their jobs," said Duggan. "The main focus was football and that's what it has to be."

Duggan's salary is shared between Manchester City and the Football Association, with rules dictating players must play for a club in England.

In a conversation with Wales striker Gwennan Harries for BBC Sport Wales TV, Duggan conceded Wales players were in a tricky situation.

"It's tough because do you want to give up a little bit of your career to push the league on in Wales and then obviously people will reap the rewards coming through?" said Duggan, who was one of England's stars at this summer's World Cup.

Harries, who was a team-mate of Duggan's at Everton, says playing in the English league has been beneficial for Welsh players.

"That's huge for us because we're playing with players like yourself that have played at a world level and we can just push on from there," Harries told Duggan.

"We've developed a league but obviously it takes time."

Players in the Women's Super League can earn up to about £35,000 from their clubs which, in the case of the English players, is in addition to their central contract salary.

You can watch Sport Wales from 19:00 BST every Friday on BBC Two Wales and on the iPlayer.

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